In an effort to eliminate the financial burden going back to school poses for some local families, the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Redlands-Riverside in partnership with the Redlands and San Bernardino Kiwanis Clubs, took 75 students on a shopping spree at Kohl’s Saturday morning.
Each child was paired with a Kiwanis club volunteer who meandered the aisles of the department store with a $100 budget to purchase clothing and shoes. A backpack filled with basic school necessities was also distributed to each participant.
Each student posed with their volunteer after checking out, beaming radiant smiles and clutching their bag full of purchases, eager to show off their newly procured items to anyone who was curious.
“We are so thankful for our partners – Kohl’s and Kiwanis – for helping out this year’s shopping spree,” said BGC Chief Executive Officer P.T. McEwen. “This provides a good start to the school year and the new purchases contribute to the students’ self confidence and self-esteem.”
This is the first year Kiwanis Club of San Bernardino participated in the event; they brought 20 kids from the Boys and Girls Club Waterman Gardens site. According to Kiwanis Vice President and BGC Development Director Eddie Hernandez, it was an opportunity to seize.
“We wanted to extend this special opportunity to families in the San Bernardino area,” he said. “Education is so important, and what better way to get the students comfortable as they start the new school year,” he said.
The event also provided an opportunity for Kiwanis club members to interact with the population they are helping.
“Our focus is on youth and this event allows us to engage with them and get to know them a little,” said Kiwanis Club of San Bernardino member Donna Ferracone. “This is also a way for us to have some fun together.”
For more information on the Boys and Girls Club Greater Redlands-Riverside, call (888) 822-6536, and for the Boys and Girls Club of San Bernardino (909) 888-6751.