PORT ORCHARD — “Though it’s still summer, school is on our minds.”
The Coffee Oasis’ back-to-school drive is in full swing right now, but it ends Aug. 22, so now is the time to help out.
According to a press release sent by The Coffee Oasis, 39,761 Washington students experienced homelessness; about 50 percent of those students live in an area served by The Coffee Oasis. Furthermore, about half of the homeless and at-risk youth involved with The Coffee Oasis are school-aged and plan to return to school for the 2017-18 school year.
“They are part of a state-wide group of struggling young people,” the press release states. “These students face a lot of barriers: lack of resources to buy necessary school supplies, unreliable transport, even bullying about their appearance because they were unable to buy new clothes or shoes.”
The Coffee Oasis has a “shopping list” of back-to-school items that would help a student in the coming school year. School supplies listed include backpacks, which are “greatly needed,” planners, notebooks, pens and pencils, calculators, three-ring binders, tab dividers and lined paper. They’re also asking for shoes, appropriate for ages 13-25 in all sizes in both male and female fashions. Donated shoes must be new.
The Coffee Oasis wish list ends with requests for $25 donations for bus passes.
“Donating a new backpack or pair of shoes will give dignity to a student,” the release states. “Giving $25 to purchase a month’s bus pass will ensure they are able to get to and from school.
“These gifts speak love and support to the young people who often feel like they are doing life on their own.”
All donations can be dropped off at any Coffee Oasis location.
To find your closest Coffee Oasis, visit thecoffeeoasis.com. Information on the back to school drive can be found at thecoffeeoasis.com/current-projects/2017-back-to-school-drive.
— Michelle Beahm is the online editor for the Kitsap News Group. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.