United Way of Northeast Mississippi helped students in Monroe County start the 2021 school year a little better prepared.

As part of their Back 2 School Project, United Way delivered school supplies and hand sanitizer to each kindergarten through sixth-grade school in Monroe County. The supplies were purchased thanks to donations from corporations and individuals in the region.

“We know that many times families can’t provide everything their children need to start back to school,” said Mike Mitchell, campaign director at United Way. “That often means that teachers are providing these items out of their own pockets. So this is a little something we can do to support our schools, our teachers and the students to help them with their education.”

Mitchell and colleague Andy Burleson delivered supplies to more than 60 elementary schools in the eight counties covered by United Way of Northeast Mississippi.

“It’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it to know we’re making a difference for the kids,” Mitchell said.

Between Amory, Aberdeen and Monroe County school districts, United Way provided 1,200 packs of paper, 15,264 pencils, 1,272 glue sticks and 232 liters of hand sanitizer.

Donors to the project included several of United Way’s corporate contributors and individuals such as recently retired nonprofit leader Mary Nell Dorris, who served as director of First Friends Respite Center for many years.

“We couldn’t do it without their support. We’re fortunate to live in a part of the state that really gives back to the community in so many ways, especially when it’s to support our children,” Mitchell said.

For more information about United Way of Northeast Mississippi, visit unitedwaynems.org.

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