Local nonprofits team up to prepare children for a return to school. The Circle of Advancement is an organization that aims to uplift at-risk and underprivileged youth in Bartow County, and it has formed a collaboration with Bartow Give a Kid a Chance to present the third annual Summer Sendoff. Circle of Advancement co-founder Silken Solomon told WBHF that this event gives away school supplies and backpacks.


“CoA Partners with Bartow Give a Kid a Chance, who is the supplier of a lot of the book bags and supplies that we receive,” Solomon said. “But we also have other anonymous donors who contribute to this event.”


Because of the global pandemic, last year’s sendoff was drive-through only. This time, Solomon says that they’ll keep the drive-through as an option, but there will also be in person activities, games, a bounce house, free haircuts, and 100 pairs of headphones to give away.


“I’m so happy, because last year […] things were kind of lessened [and] we weren’t able to have as big of a crowd,” Solomon said. “I’m happy to be able to bounce back.”


Volunteers from last year's Summer Sendoff pose together.


CoA reports that they were able to give away 150 bags of school supplies at last year’s drive-through event. It is predicted that they could give away 175 bags at this year’s sendoff.


Registration to receive items closed last week, but Solomon said that volunteers and those in need alike are still encouraged to come out, as any other supplies will be given on a first-come, first-serve basis, and attendees can still participate in the free events.


The third annual Summer Sendoff will take place on Monday, July 26 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Summer Hill Shopping Center.