The Northern Neck Family YMCA’s Bright Beginnings program took children back to school shopping the last two weeks of August.
The Bright Beginnings program pairs a child with a caring adult volunteer “shopping buddy” and children learn that the community cares about them and wants them to succeed, reported senior operations director Liz Allen. Bright Beginnings makes for confident and prepared kids on the first day of school; and contributing and engaged adults tomorrow.
Some 91 children started school with confidence and determination thanks to significant contributions from Chesapeake Bank and Bay Aging, said Allen. These great community partners, along with private donors, are investing in the well-being of children in our community.
Since 2005, the Northern Neck YMCA Bright Beginnings program has helped more than 1,000 children in need prepare to start the new school year ready to learn with more than 30 back-to-school shopping trips.
Together the child and shopping buddy shop for outfits, shoes, socks, underwear and a warm sweater or jacket. They also share a meal and, if time allows, read a story, play a game or color together.
Backpacks filled with grade appropriate school supplies are provided for each child. This year, winter coats were provided by the Rotary Club of Newport News and Operation Warm.