ASHE — As another school year approaches, Ashe County students are looking at a new “normal” for returning to school. The Ashe County Volunteer Initiative Program will be holding its 15th Annual Ashe County School Supply Drive to help parents and families meet the need of buying school supplies for their children who will be returning to school this fall.

To combat the spread of COVID-19, the Board of Education and the Volunteer Initiative Program will be working together to make sure they have the necessary supplies for the students to return to school safely. This includes disinfecting supplies, Clorox wipes, paper towels, hand sanitizer of an 80 percent alcohol solution or higher and masks for students. Notebooks, binders, loose-leaf paper, crayons, glue, pens and pencils etc. will be purchased in bulk as well.

We are asking for monetary donations only at this time to purchase these items, so we can disinfect the boxes before delivery to our six Ashe County public schools. Any monies left over, will be distributed to the schools’ guidance counselors to purchase any other necessary supplies for the students. They too will purchase and disinfect items in bulk to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Our students and teachers will be needing face masks to wear when social distancing is not an option. The Board of Education and Volunteer Initiative Program will also hold a face mask supply drive for the students and teachers.

If you would like to help purchase or make masks for them, please drop them off at Ashe Services for Aging.

Your children’s safety is our top priority as the school year approaches; please help us make sure your children have a safe start back to school this year.

If you would like to participate by making a monetary donation, please make checks payable to Ashe Services for Aging and write “School Supply Drive” in the memo section of the check.

Any checks can be mailed to Ashe Services for Aging at 180 Chattyrob Lane in West Jefferson, NC 28694. If you have any questions, please call Terri Hopkins, Ashe County Volunteer Coordinator at (336) 246-4347.

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