Home News COVID-19 Situation Volunteer group plans school supply drive

Volunteer group plans school supply drive


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A local organization is conducting a school supply drive with a goal of helping up to 100 children in Roswell.

It’s a smaller effort than what the Community Volunteer Program has done in the past, the group’s leader, Mary Gonzales, said.

“I used to do up to 800, 700, but right now it’s so limited. We’re limited everywhere,” Gonzales said of organizing the drive during the coronavirus pandemic.

Parents must register their children to receive the school supplies, she said. Registration will be from 7 to 8 p.m. Friday in Pioneer Plaza, 424 N. Main Street, across from the Chaves County Courthouse. Parents can also register by calling Gonzales at 575-624-7579.

The supplies will be distributed Sept. 5. Parents and their children must be present and parents must show identification. Gonzales said that is to ensure the supplies are getting to those who registered for them.

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The organization is also taking donations of school supplies and money for the drive as well.

“I need donations for school supplies, or backpacks to give to these children. They are in need” whether they are in the classroom or online, she said.

Monetary donations can be sent to Community Volunteer Program at P.O. Box 2790, Roswell NM 88202, or donors can call Gonzales at the above number.

Gonzales said the pandemic has had a detrimental affect on projects by the Community Volunteer Program and Prison Door Ministries, which were started by her husband, Johnny Gonzales. For more than three decades, he worked with youth and prisoners, presented tent revivals and community service programs.

Gonzales said the health orders have meant the Community Volunteer Program and ministry have not been able to do projects such as an Easter food basket giveaway and food baskets for the elderly. The ministry has not been allowed in prisons to conduct its programs either, she said.

She said she is hopeful plans can be made to continue the annual Thanksgiving diner for the community.

“I just pray it opens all up. I will follow all the rules and regulations or whatever (Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham) is going to give so we can do some stuff,” Gonzales said.

Waymaker Church, 202 Sunset Ave., will also be giving away backpacks and school supplies from 5 to 7 pm. Saturday at the church.

Pastor Joel Wood said the giveaway will be first-come, first-served.

“It will be drive-through style so people don’t have to get out of their cars. We’re not requiring anything as far as any kind of identification or paperwork or anything,” he said.

The backpacks will contain some basic school supplies.

“We usually do full school supplies but with all the changes we’re just going the backpack route for those that may need it with some real basic supplies in it,” he said.

Cars should enter the church parking lot from Alameda Street, he said. A welcome flag will mark the entrance.

To keep up with local coverage of the coronavirus, go to rdrnews.com/category/news/covid-19-situation/.

City/RISD reporter Juno Ogle can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or reporter04@rdrnews.com.

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