Capstone Rural Health Center's Back 2 School Supply and Backpack Giveaway will be held next week and be organized differently due to COVID-19.
The event will be held in a drive-through fashion this year at the old Parrish High School (35 Tornado Alley, Parrish) on Friday, July 31, from 9 to 11 a.m.
Amber Elswick, operations director for Capstone Rural Health Center, said people will follow the signs for a parking lineup at the high school and one row of cars will be let in at a time to receive the giveaways.
Each child will receive a backpack and supplies, and children must be present to receive the items.
Children in Pre-K through 12th grade will be eligible for the giveaway.
The Back 2 School event typically features many vendors and fun activities; however, only five vendors have been able to commit to attending the event this year due to health risks.
Elswick explained that after each car visits the Capstone booth people will then have the option to drive around the track of Parrish High School's football field. Participating vendors will be lined up along the way to give away items to children.
Vendors who could not participate this year due to COVID-19 did donate money that was used to purchase backpacks and supplies as well as a pair of shoes for each child and hygiene products.
Shoes and items for personal care are typically not distributed at the event.
Each child will also receive a reusable, monogrammed Capstone face mask.
Approximately 750 backpacks are expected to be given away at the Back 2 School event.
Elswick said parents can rest assured that Capstone employees and vendors will be doing everything they can to protect those who attend the giveaway.
"All of the Capstone staff and every vendor will be required to wear a mask and a face shield. We will also have gloves and other PPE (personal protective equipment) available, as well as sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, and spray that will be used between every car," Elswick said. "We're trying to keep everyone as safe as possible."
A Back 2 School Supply and Backpack Giveaway will also be held for Winston County residents at Hamner Memorial Park (Helicon Road, Highway 77, Arley) on Saturday, Aug. 1, from 10 a.m. to noon.
Around 250 backpacks will be given away at the Winston County event.
In the event of rain, backpacks will be distributed to local schools for students in need. Elswick said Capstone will make an announcement on the center's Facebook page the day before the event if it will be canceled.
A list of sponsors for the event includes Samuel Lee Smith Foundation, BCBS Caring Foundation, Wells Fargo, Arley Women’s Club, Ridgeview Health Services, Ridgewood Health Services, Nelson Bryan & Cross, Metal Central, Walmart, Back 40 Cowboy Church, Tell Tree Logging Company, Hatt Church of Christ, Synovus, Pinnacle Bank, Carl Cannon, The Storage Place, Honda of Japer, Jasper First Methodist Church, First National Bank, Artec Tractor, Son’s of Arley, Town of Arley, Son’s of Jasper, Jasper Accounting Services, Traxx Equipment, High-Point Furniture, Son’s of Parrish, Williams Building Supply, Listerhill Credit Union, Ace Hardware in Curry, Adkins Trucking, Free State Boat Dock, Town of Addison, Traditions Bank, Jasper Mattress Warehouse, Honeycutt Chiropractic, Kustom Trophy, Parkland Hardware, Scrubs Elite, Jasper Discount Auto Parts, Custom Shirts & Signs, Jasper Pickers, Libby’s This & That, Fitness Contingent (Derailed), Ghends Glamour Pets, Jasper Electric Company, Perry’s Paint & Body, Don Allison Equipment, Love’s Hair Design, Froggs BBQ, Addison Veterinary Clinic, Smith Lake Vintage Mall, Shoe Carnival, Holiday Inn and Hampton Inn.
Anyone who would like to make a donation in support of the Back 2 School event may call 205-724-9031. More information about the event can be provided by calling the number as well.