Although school may be the furthest thing from the minds of most students during the dog days of summer, organizers are asking for the community's help in preparing for the sixth annual back-to-school event, "Praise in the Park" on July 25, at 1400 Parker Road starting at 8 a.m.
Last year the event served around 700 kids by handing out bookbags and school supplies. This year, the goal is to serve 750 kids, said organizer Mike Hutcheson.
"It's a tremendous event," said Hutcheson, head of the Father's Heart ministry. "The blessing is not that it gets needed school supplies into the hands of those who need it, but it gives the community a truly collaborative event that brings together ministries, social services, government agencies."
In addition to looking for groups or individuals to sponsor children at $10 a child, he's also looking for groups to help by holding school supply drives or by volunteering for the event.
"It's always amazing to see how those provisions come when people come together in unity to say, ‘we want to do something good for the people of this community,'" said Hutcheson, who was the former pastor of Grace Tabernacle Church for seven years.
This year, community sponsors include (in no particular order):
Community Resource Network
Rockdale County Public Schools
Rockdale Coalition for Families and Children
Rockdale County Commission Chairman
United Way Rockdale
United Rockdale Summit
Rockdale Emergency Relief
The Father's House Church
Church in the Now
Father's Heart Outreach Ministries
Prevent Child Abuse Rockdale
Rockdale Democratic Party Committee
Miles of Learning
Christ Community Church
Open Doors Transitional Home
Southern Baptist Disaster Relief Response Team
Conyers United Methodist Church
Conyers First Baptist Church
For more information on how to help, contact Hutcheson at 770-652-9579 or at email@example.com