Intown Centre renews its back-to-school bag appeal

Callum HunterSouth Western Times
Intown Centre manager Leanne Gibbs shows off some of the contents of a donated school backpack.
Camera IconIntown Centre manager Leanne Gibbs shows off some of the contents of a donated school backpack. Credit: Callum Hunter

The Bunbury Intown Centre has renewed its appeal for school backpacks in the name of its Back to School 2019 Appeal.

The appeal was launched in 2013 to help underprivileged children return to school with the essential learning tools they need.

Centre manager Leanne Gibbs said she had to do something when she heard of school children turning up to class with nothing more than a plastic bag.

“In the first year we rallied together and got a bit of support,” she said.

“I think we only made about 20 bags, but since then we sit at roughly about 100 each year.

“Some years we’ve fallen short by a few and a couple of years ago we ended up with nearly 170.”

Aimed at students from pre-primary to Year 10, the appeal has been broken down into year groups with different year levels requiring different equipment.

Members of the public can donate packs for children between Pre-Primary and Year 3, Years 4 to 6 and Years 7 to Year 10.

Earlier this week, the tally of donated backpacks sat about 60, according to Ms Gibbs, who said the items being appealed for were only basic, just enough for students to return to school and not feel ostracised or excluded.

“We’ve found that it gives the kids in need a sense of worth by having something to take on the first day,” she said.

“The parents are often overwhelmed and very emotional about it all, and being run through the Department of Communities, we know they are going to the right people which is very important.”

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