Pellston Family Dollar Collects School Supply Donations for Elementary School

"It really just brings tears to my eyes thinking about how appreciative our children will be of this," Pellston Elementary School principal Tammy Pichla said.

An Emmet County community is stepping up in a big way.

Elementary school students will start the year with brand new, completely supplies.

It’s part of Family Dollar’s backpack program where customers can donate money or buy supplies at the register for kids.

Wednesday was the last day for donations at the Family Dollar in Pellston, but they can’t believe how many supplies they already have.

9 & 10’s Blayke Roznowski and photojournalist Noah Jurik show us how the donations will help this school year.

"Seeing everything, like, all the papers, the pencils, the folders," Pellston Elementary School teacher Shari Saddison said. "It’s going to be so helpful for families they don’t have to purchase it on their own and it’ll help us as teachers just having those supplies in our classroom."

It was a simple question at the Pellston Family Dollar Register.

Would you like to donate to the backpack program?

With more than 180 bags already filled, they’re blown away by the community support.

"It’s goosebumps. "I mean, the number kept growing and growing and it got to 100 and that was absolutely amazing," Family Dollar store manager Angie Jackson said. "It just shows that when a little community comes together what they can do." 

Teachers in the area say they cannot wait to get the backpacks and pass them out to the kids and see the reactions when they open them up and see all of the supplies inside. 

"Nobody gets the sheer joy that were going to get to see when they bring their new backpack or their new lunchbox or their notebook," Pellston Elementary School teacher Emily Matelski said.

Parents say the supplies will make a world of difference.

"The students enjoy it because they are getting something new that’s special to them that they get to come pick out," a parent Sara Broman said. "The parents, it’s just a huge relief on them not having to supply everything at the beginning of the year."

"We’re just really grateful," Matelski said. "A lot of times it’s small things like this that make a really profound difference and this puts our kids with the right foot forward."