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NEWS RELEASES 2002-03

NEWS RELEASES 2002-03 :: OCTOBER 4, 2002

NORTH CAROLINA STUDENTS COLLECT OVER 10,000 SCHOOL SUPPLIES FOR KIDS IN AFGHANISTAN

A seven-month effort by students and teachers across North Carolina is resulting in over 10,000 kits of school supplies being shipped to Afghanistan. A trailer load of student and teacher kits that were collected for the Student to Student project left a warehouse in Goldsboro today.

Student to Student was started by North Carolina students who were sparked by a visit to Afghanistan by State Superintendent Mike Ward. While on a mission trip to Afghanistan with the international relief agency, Stop Hunger Now, Ward held a conference call with students in 15 North Carolina schools. The students asked how they could help the children and teachers in Afghanistan, many of who lack desks, paper, pencils, and other basic school supplies. There are some 9.6 million school-age children in Afghanistan.

Student organizations, individual classes, and schools around the state helped collect the kits. Kits are still being accepted for later shipment to Afghanistan.

The North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church is supplying warehouse space and some churches also are collecting kits. Stop Hunger Now is coordinating the delivery of the kits to Afghanistan.

Ward described the outpouring of support from students and teachers in North Carolina as "heartwarming."

"We should all be proud of the many students, teachers, parents and others who heard about the Student to Student project and immediately started working to put together school supply kits. The fact that we are able to provide over 10,000 students and teachers with needed school supplies is a testament to the spirit of giving for which North Carolina is known. This effort really is building bridges of peace." Ward said.

Three North Carolina students who participated in the conference call co-chaired the kickoff of the project. They are: Jennifer Bishop, Southeast Raleigh High School; Carrie Hamilton, a former student at West Forsyth High School; and Krystal Hill, a former student at Richmond Senior High School. Student kits include: 8 1/2 x 11 white paper (min. 50-sheet pkg.), #2 yellow pencils, pencil sharpener (small, handheld), ballpoint pens, colored pencils, crayons, watercolor paints, clipboard (no stickers), safety scissors, ruler (metric), and soap/washcloth/tube socks.

Teacher kits include: 8 1/2 x 11 white paper (min. 50-sheet pkg.), construction paper, chalk, tape, tape measure, glue sticks, world map, inflatable globe, scissors, ruler (metric), ballpoint pens, markers and clipboard. Clipboards are particularly important since there are no desks.

The kits should be packaged individually in plastic storage/sweater boxes (approx. 10" X 14"), plastic storage bags or bookbags. If plastic storage bags are used, students may want to clip the bags to the clipboard.

Kits can either be delivered to the United Methodist Church warehouses or shipped there.

Eastern Facility-MERCI-The Marion Edwards Recovery Center, 676 Community Drive, Goldsboro, NC 27530, phone: 1.888.440.9167, (second number is 1.800.849.4433, ext. 318).

Western Facility-Western N.C. Conference Mission Response Center, 8973 Greenwood Rd, Terrell, NC 28682-9738, phone: 1.800.562.7929.

If groups prefer to make a financial contribution, please make checks payable to Stop Hunger Now and mark them for Student to Student Project. Send financial contributions to Stop Hunger Now, Student to Student Project, 2501 Clark St., Suite 301, Raleigh, NC 27607-7213. Stop Hunger Now is a 501C, (3) nonprofit organization.

A special Web site on the project includes additional details. The site is located at http://www.ncpublicschools.org/afghanistan or call the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction’s Communications Division at 919.807.3450.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 107 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.


For more information:
NCDPI Communications and Information, 919.807.3450.