According to the National Retail Federation, in 2013 back to school spending averaged $634.78 for families with children in grades K-12. The cost increases dramatically when college age students are included. Grace Church and its Helping Hands of Grace Ministry hopes to help families in Dumfries, Va. bear some of the financial burden.
“For over a decade, Grace Church has been committed to being a good neighbor,” said Deaconess Teri Milton, Grace Church Helping Hands Coordinator. “The Back to School Give Away is just one of many annual outreach activities that we host to support the Dumfries community.”
The Back To School Give Away will take place on August 23rd from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Grace Church Ambassador Center located at 17889 Fraley Blvd.
“As a parent, I understand well the dread and excitement that comes from the very words ‘back to school,’” said Bishop Derek Grier, Senior Pastor of Grace Church. “For many parents, the dread comes from the huge financial burden of buying school supplies. The Grace Church Back to School Give Away will help families shoulder some of that burden.”
“We want to fill the backpacks with needed supplies, so we can fill the hearts and homes of the children in our community,” said Sherece Stewart a school teacher who serves as a Grace Church Helping Hands Volunteer. “As a teacher, I automatically know which kids don't have their needed supplies on the first day, because they are the ones who come in with their heads down.”
In addition to the school supply drive, which benefits over 200 neighborhood kids each year, Grace Church provides Christmas and Thanksgiving dinners to local families. The Church gives away almost 2,000 pounds of food each month to Dumfries families and throughout the year provides financial support to help families struggling with utilities and rent.
About Grace Church: Under the leadership of founding Pastor Bishop Derek Grier, Grace Church located in Prince William County, Va. grew from a congregation of 12 to currently serving over 5,000 members. The church was named one of the fastest growing churches in America by Outreach Magazine. Grace Church, a gospel-believing congregation is best known for its strong teaching ministry, vibrant worship, life-building children and youth departments, community service and its emphasis on personal integrity.