Community members support students in need at annual back-to-school fair

Hundreds of volunteers worked to provide Edmonds School District students in need with free school supplies. (Photo courtesy of the Edmonds School District)

With help from several community partners, the Edmonds School District provided more than a thousand students in need with school supplies ahead of the new school year.

Earlier this week, more than one hundred community volunteers and district employees worked to safely distribute backpacks with school supplies and face masks to 1,600 students who registered for the 2020 Back-to-School Fair.

The drive-up event took place over two days at eight different school locations as well as Community Life Center and Meadowdale Community Church. The event also included onsite medical appointments for some students.

The annual fair has always taken place at one school in the district, on one given day, with several organizations attending to provide services and information for families. However, COVID-19 forced the Back-to-School Fair Consortium — which plans the event and includes the school district and several community partners — to make critical changes. According to staff, the event’s primary focus remained clear: keep everyone safe and find an effective way to ensure families receive needed educational supplies.

Families who qualified for free-and-reduced meals were also reminded to fill out their paperwork to ensure students would receive meals during the year. The paperwork is available through this application link. More details are also available on the district’s website.

Families who registered for the event but were unable to attend are encouraged to work with their school office to coordinate a time for picking up supplies safely.

The Back-to-School Fair is made possible by a consortium committed to supporting students. Partners included the Center for Human Services, Windermere and the Windermere Foundation, Washington Kids in Transition, Hazel Miller Foundation, Verdant Health Commision, and the Foundation for Edmonds School District, for the generous support to make this year’s event happen.

More details on the generosity from sponsors and community partners:

  • Windermere and Windermere Foundation provided $10,000 in funding. They also provided volunteers who devoted an entire day to assemble more than 3,000 supply packs.
  • Hazel Miller Foundation increased their support to this year’s event from $5,000 to $10,000.
  • Verdant Health Commission is working with the Foundation for Edmonds School District to provide funds for PPE and thermometers for families in need.
  • The cities of Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace donated 7,000 masks.
  • Community members made and donated over 1,000 cloth masks. 
  • Center Health Clinic provided medical and sports physical support.
  • Foundation for Edmonds School District contributed $3,000 and provided countless hours of volunteer support.

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