By Chris Gregory, Managing Editor

Hartsville’s Summer Backpack Program completed its fourth year on Saturday with its annual cookout, at which school supplies, backpacks and shoes were distributed to around 60 Trousdale County children.

The Summer Backpack Program came about through cooperation between multiple community groups, including the school system, Hartsville Rotary Club, Church of the Firstborn and Hartsville United Methodist Church.

Submitted photo
Volunteers help pack food boxes as part of the Summer Backpack Program.

Each Saturday morning during the summer, volunteers gathered at the Church of the Firstborn to pack food boxes that were then distributed to families in need. Volunteers also delivered boxes each week to those unable to make it to the church for pickup.

The summer numbers were down somewhat in 2019, with an average of 40 to 50 boxes going out each Saturday. In 2018, that number was closer to 60 to 70 each week.

“I think we had a great crowd that came to our backpack program,” said Kathy Atwood, who helped organize the summer program. “It’s really important for our community to know how much we appreciate the support we receive for the program, both during the school year and the summer.”

During the school year, volunteers will pack food bags to be distributed to participating students each Friday.

“Most of the families work with are working or have had something happen where they couldn’t work any more,” Atwood said. “These families try hard and we just try to help them and our students have a good school year.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or [email protected]