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Devereux National

Back to School Supported by Devereux’s Donors

The school year is underway and Devereux’s children began the challenge well supplied with new backpacks, pencils, paper, notebooks, crayons and calculators—all generously donated by you, our donors.

Devereux donors purchased and dropped off supplies at various Office Depot and Pollo Tropical locations and Devereux received 100 filled backpacks from The Tampa Bay Buccaneers/Glazer Family Foundation. A Stuff the Bus event was held at The Avenues in Viera where many turned out to “stuff a bus” with supplies.  We are very grateful to all the realtors at Viera Realty who contributed dollars so that additional supplies could be purchased.  The Eau Gallie Rotary, Suntree United Methodist Church and Walgreen’s employees also made significant contributions toward the backpack drive.

Once all the backpacks and supplies were gathered, volunteers from RSVP, Kohl’s Department Store, Civil Air Patrol and Everglades University spent two days filling and carefully labeling each backpack. The entire charge was led by Cherie Faircloth, an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer who is dedicating a year of her time to support Devereux’s backpack drive efforts.  Children received the backpacks from their case managers, therapists or support staff from Devereux in the week prior to the beginning of the school year.

All of this hard work meant that more than 1,100 children—from elementary school aged to high schoolers—received backpacks filled with all the basics needed to get the year off on the right foot.  500 more children received unfilled backpack, helping their families defray some of the “back-to-school” costs.

While a backpack and supplies may seem like a small gift, its impact can be dramatic.  Starting the school year with a new backpack and supplies “just like the kid next to you” is critical for self-esteem.  A Devereux child, already struggling with developmental delays, behavioral challenges, broken homes, or abuse and neglect, benefits enormously from this single gift.  More than the crayons, pencils and paper, it is a sign that someone believes in him…and that someone is YOU! To learn more about Devereux and its services, visit DevereuxFL.org.