Local families will benefit from donated school supplies, clothing

HARLINGEN — The school district’s offices were overflowing with school supplies and donated clothing yesterday.

In one room, a group of volunteers sat on the floor sorting through piles of shoes, jeans, shirts and other clothing items.

In another room, two girls put together a bag of school supplies with a binder, colors, notebooks, pencils and paper.

The Harlingen school district’s Parental Involvement office was preparing for Texas Parents’ Day, happening tomorrow at the Boys and Girls Club.

Hundreds of families benefit from Texas Parents’ Day, according to Connie Mejia, who is with Parental Involvement.

The event usually draws a large crowd of parents with school-age children in need of supplies and clothes for their kids to start the year.

“We’re just here to help out the kids,” Mejia said.

Parents can pick up a bag of school supplies along with items of clothing for their students.

With help from United Way of Northern Cameron County and local Starbucks baristas, they were able to sort through all the items within a couple of hours.

Patsy Sanchez from Parental Involvement said without volunteers, sorting through all the donated items would take a couple of days.

United Way has been raising school supplies through a “Stuff the Bus” campaign.

Kathy Preddy from United Way said that it used to be just her and one other person who would sort through the supplies, but with help from the local baristas, it has gone by faster.

Jessie Rosenbaum from Starbucks had reached out to Preddy looking for a way for their store to get involved in the community.

Preddy then contacted Parental Involvement to inform them about the new volunteers.

Any leftover clothing from Texas Parents’ Day will be put in the HCISD closet.

During the year, students in need of clothing can stop by and pick out a couple of outfits to take home.

Harlingen is the only district with a closet and has been open for five years.