Just 48 hours after worrying they may fall short, officials with United Way Alberta Northwest say the overwhelming generosity of Grande Prairie residents pushed the Tools for School program well beyond its goal.
“It was beyond expectations and it was very overwhelming that we had so many people that wanted to help, and were out collecting on behalf of us,” said Business Development Manager Jessica Schoepp.
With a request list of nearly 600 and a lower than expected turn out for the annual Stuff A Bus campaign, Schoepp says they had at best enough supplies for 400 bags. Schoepp said it was only after the program finished up for the day and it was clear that expectations weren’t met that things turned around.
“With the exposure came more people realizing that there was help out there. So we had maybe 100, or 120 more requests in the last two days which we ended up putting on a waitlist, and then were able to fulfill the waitlist due to the amount of support that we got.”
Schoepp says it is just another amazing example of the generosity of people in Grande Prairie, as they once again when stopped up when needed most.
“Once people realized that something was going wrong and isn’t going to happen that needs to happen, everyone steps up. It’s very amazing and it makes me so proud of where I live.”
The backpacks will be handed out to families before the first day of school on September 3rd.