School supply lists are available at most of the area’s big box stores. If parents are unable to find their school’s list of supplies they can be found online at www.mychesterfieldschools.com/schools/supply-lists/.  After finding the list, tackling the list is another story; which is quite daunting and takes a heavy bite out of one’s weekly budget. Expect to spend at least $75 to $100 for elementary grade levels, throw in a couple of new outfits and a new pair of shoes and parents can expect to spend $200 to $300 getting a child ready for school. If you have more than one child preparing for school, the costs add up.
Area churches and businesses help with their school supply drives. The supplies collected will go to schools near their home base.
Thrive Church is an area church that holds a School Supply Drive within its congregation. Less than a year old, located at 7211 Iron Bridge Rd., the church connected with Bensley Elementary during the 2012-13 school year. They hosted a Back-to-School Bash at the school where school supplies were distributed along with a bounce house, snow cones and other games to bless the kids. For the 2013-14 school year, along with Bensley Elementary, they have connected with Hening Elementary and will be hosting two Back-to-School bashes. School supplies will be distributed along with lots of fun for Bensley Elementary students on Saturday, August 24 at 10 a.m. and at Hening Elementary on Thursday, Aug. 29 at 5 p.m. Each event will last around two hours. “People can donate for school supplies at Thrive Church,” said Kevin Bordeaux, Lead Pastor. “They can drop off Sundays 9 a.m. - Noon and Wednesdays 5p.m. - 8 p.m.
Peoples Advantage Federal Credit Union is sponsoring a school supply drive for local school children the entire month of August. “Help us prepare children in our communities for a successful school year by donating supplies such as pencils, pens, notebook paper, erasers, stickers (for teachers), glue sticks, crayons, tissues, highlighters, 3 ring binders and safety scissors,” said Debbie Davis. Donations will be accepted at PAFCU locations in Petersburg, Colonial Heights and Chester from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and 10a.m. - 5 p.m. on Wednesday. For more information, call Debbie Davis at Peoples Advantage Federal Credit Union, 804-748-3081 ext. 705 or email, firstname.lastname@example.org .
Bank of McKenney Matoaca Branch is also collecting school supplies that will benefit Matoaca Elementary and Ettrick Elementary. The Matoaca branch of Bank of McKinney is located at 6700 River Rd. For more information call 804-590-9914.
Klara’s Kitchun, located at 11360 Iron Bridge Rd., is holding a Book Bag Supply drive with a Back-to-School Cookout on Saturday, Aug. 24. For more information call 796-3737.
This newspaper is certain there are more drives in the community to benefit the local schools. Our apologies if we fail ed to mention any additional ones. For parents needing help with their child’s supplies contact your school principal to see if supplies are available from donations by businesses and churches.