Making a Difference for California Students Through Backpack Donations

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GameTime Partners with U.S. Communities to Provide Backpacks and School Supplies for 500 Deserving Students

Assembling Backpacks for Students in Fresno, California

It is such a joy to present a child with a backpack filled with school supplies. Students immediately put them on and smile.

GameTime, a leading manufacturer of commercial playground equipment for schools, and supplier partner to U.S. Communities, recently helped raise awareness for underprivileged students in California. During the recent U.S. Communities 2015 Annual Planning Meeting, attendees filled 500 new backpacks with supplies. This year’s recipient, Fresno Unified School District, was overwhelmed and grateful for the donation to their students.

Following dinner on the first day of the meeting, attendees formed “assembly” lines to fill each backpack with everything from pencils and water bottles to pocket folders, rulers and calculators. As attendees filled 500 backpacks with school supplies, inspirational notes were written to each student to provide encouragement and hope. Paul Rosencrans, U.S. Communities Advisory Board member and executive director of purchasing for Fresno Unified School District, was honored to accept these backpacks on behalf of Fresno Unified School District. He personally delivered the backpacks from the meeting in San Diego. “As I drive this truck filled with backpacks and supplies from San Diego to Fresno, I plan to take some time of reflection to be grateful for all the opportunities I have been given and what this means for each student that will receive their own backpack,” Rosencrans said.

Fresno Unified has a program called Project ACCESS (Achievement in Core Curriculum for Equity and Student Success) which oversees the enrollment of all homeless families into the school district. Nancy Horn, FUSD Project ACCESS/HHI Manager explains, “This year, in the first semester alone we enrolled 465 new homeless students in grades K through 12. It is such a joy to present a child with a backpack filled with school supplies. Students immediately put them on and smile. Many times they don’t have anything that is their own because of being locked out due to eviction or being kicked out of a home they were sharing, so this gift can mean so much.” Throughout the year, Fresno Unified works to help students with what they need to be successful in school and at their “home” for homework. “At this point, we are out of backpacks so this donation is coming at a perfect time,” said Horn.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this initiative and to give back to the students in one of the communities we serve,” commented Fred Wiechmann, Vice President of Marketing for GameTime. “This is one of the many reasons we are proud to be a partner supplier to U.S. Communities.”

About GameTime
GameTime is a leading manufacturer of commercial playgrounds, custom play spaces and outdoor fitness equipment. Headquartered in Fort Payne, Alabama, and with distribution around the world, GameTime has been dedicated to enriching childhood through play since our founding in 1929. Our products combine play research with thoughtful design to create playgrounds for children of all abilities. We bring together the right corporate, civic and nonprofit partners to build healthy, active communities that make the world a better place for children and families.

About U.S. Communities
U.S. Communities is the leading national government and education purchasing cooperative, providing world-class government procurement resources and solutions to local and state government agencies, school districts (K-12), higher education institutes and nonprofits in search of the best overall supplier pricing. The three-day 2015 U.S. Communities Annual Meeting united the U.S. Communities team with their participants and suppliers to collectively chart a continued course for success, strengthen relationships and partnerships, and help realize the organization’s fullest potential.

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Kent Callison
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