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Marysville food bank collects school supplies
MARYSVILLE — Marysville’s Marisa Khinir is a single parent to four children, with the oldest in middle school, two in grade school and one in special education due to autism.
Like many parents throughout America, she’s been out of work for a while — nearly two years — and like many Marysville-area parents, she’s already coming to the Marysville Community Food Bank to make sure her kids have meals.
Since the annual Marysville Summer Jubilee to distribute free school supplies was cancelled this year, Marysville Community Food Bank Director Dell Deierling decided to meet the needs of parents like Khinir at a place where they already receive aid, by collecting school supplies from the community to distribute to Food Bank clients with children.
“We gave away 131 packets of school supplies on Tuesday,” Deierling said of the Food Bank’s first day of distribution on Aug. 21. “That just about cleared us out, so we’re hoping we can count on the community’s generosity to shore us up.”
Deierling noted that 40 percent of the individuals served by the Marysville Community Food Bank are children, and added that more than 80 percent of students in some Marysville schools qualify for free or reduced-price school lunches.
“Children are the largest group impacted by food insecurity,” said Deierling, whose volunteers have handed out school supplies to families with children that have been clients of the Food Bank between July 1 of last year to June 30 of this year. “Food is obviously more important than school supplies, so if these kids’ families can’t afford to buy them enough food, they’re definitely not going to be able to buy them the school supplies that they need.”
The Marysville Community Food Bank is collecting No. 2 pencils, wide-ruled and college-ruled filler paper, glue sticks, crayons, 12-packs of colored pencils, 70-page spiral notebooks and pink erasers from 7:30-11:30 a.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, as well as from 2-6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. Those school supplies will be distributed, as long as they hold out, on Mondays from 9-11 a.m. for disabled clients, and for regular clients on Tuesdays from 3-6 p.m. and Fridays from 9-11 a.m., at 4150 88th St. NE, behind St. Mary’s Catholic Church.
Donations may also be made out to the Marysville Community Food Bank and sent to P.O. Box 917, Marysville, WA 98270, or made on their website at http://marysvillefoodbank.org via PayPal.
“If it wasn’t for this, I’d be able to do nothing,” Khinir said as she collected the school supplies for her children on Friday, Aug. 24, out of the remaining packets at the Food Bank. “It’s hard to make do these days, so we appreciate it when people help out as much as they can.”
“Some people are embarrassed to get this sort of help, but with the economy as bad as it is, you do what you’ve got to do,” said Khinir’s mother, Coralynn.
Deierling pointed out that the Food Bank always needs more volunteers during their distribution days on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays.
“We’ve got 8 percent more clients than we had this time last year, but our food donations are down 6 percent from where they were last year, and our dollar donations are down 10 percent,” Deierling said. “Those trend lines are going in the wrong direction.”