Project SOS Helps In A Big Way Before School Starts


Backpacks, backpacks and more backpacks. Project SOS made some kids’ day by giving them new school supplies. The program, which was started by The Banquet, has been going strong for 29 years. 

“People that worked at the Banquet came to the realization that if people were having trouble feeding their children nutritious meals, they probably were having trouble providing them with all the school supplies that they needed,” said Tamera Jerke-Liesinger, Executive Director of The Banquet.

The donations come in all year and the supplies are sorted to match each of the individual school’s supply list. 

“Everything that happens at project SOS, just like everything that happens at the Banquet, is completely through private donations. So people all summer long have been bringing in school supplies, backpacks, or financial gifts to go towards Project SOS. It’s really an amazing thing,” said Jerke-Liesinger. 

Each backpack comes with supplies to help them get started for the school year and as you can see there’s a wide variety of designs and choices that they can pick from.

Brothers Salim and Ahmed were excited to get their backpacks. 

“Like I feel thankful, you know, like appreciative for what the banquet is doing, you know, there’s a lot of smiling kids out here, you know,” said Salim Mohamed.

All of the hard work and planning that went into today paid off for the volunteers as they saw all of the happy faces. 

“It makes me and all the volunteers feel so good. When you’re handing a child a brand new back pack that they’ve been able to pick out themselves, um, they’re so thrilled and they’re so excited to go to school on the first day and have all those things all the other students are going to have.”

If you weren’t able to make it to get a backpack this time, they’re having another distribution at The Banquet, on Sept. 5, beginning at 6 a.m. They’ll also be giving out supplies after school. 

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