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EPIC Church provides school supplies for 1200 kindergartners

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Posted at 8:29 AM, Aug 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-05 11:22:19-04

BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. — Every August, EPIC Church gets ready to head back to school.

Organizers are filling up a room inside the church with markers, scissors, glue sticks and more.

"We decided, 'What if we provided school supplies for every kindergartner at the school?'" EPIC Lead Pastor Bobby Hawk said. "Nobody's singled out, nobody has to ask for it. Everybody receives it and then the ones that don't need the help have the opportunity to pay it forward."

Four years ago, the church provided school supplies for every kindergartner at one Blue Springs school. Now, it's serving all kindergartners in the district.

"Well we decided to do all 13 elementary schools, and the special education center and all of the students there and we've been doing that ever since," Hawk said.

Now organizers give 1,200 students the school supplies they'll need for the upcoming school year.

"The great thing is we take them to all of the schools before school starts, so when they show up for their first orientation night, the school supplies are already there, they're in their classroom," Hawk said. "They don't have to come pick them up anywhere. They don't have to come attend a service to get them, they just literally show up at school and their supplies are there."

According to the latest back-to-school National Retail Federation survey, families with children in elementary school through high school will spend an average of nearly $697. That's up from about $12 from last year.

"Kindergarten can be a difficulty for some parents because it's a new transition, and for some financially .Those school supplies can cost anywhere from $40 to $50 to somebody's who's just going out and buying them," Hawk said. "So we alleviate that burden as well and again for those who can pay it forward, we encourage that."

It's an event they prepare for year-round, raising about $20,000 for the district's early learners.