Young Professionals Association Backpack Program
The Young Professionals Association of the Ashland Alliance is collecting backpacks for its annual Backpack Program. The deadline to turn in backpacks is July 25 for the 643 children in need. You may turn in backpacks to Amanda Gillum at Town Square Bank, 1500 Carter Ave., in Ashland. Anyone interested in sponsoring at child for the backpack program contact Gillum at 606-923-9091 or Mary Kay McGinnis Roark at 606-922-8283.
Each year YPA coordinates an annual backpack program for children in Boyd and Greenup counties. The primary goal of the program is to ensure that each elementary school student starts the school year with the necessary school supplies and at least one new outfit. Through the involvement of our membership and many other members of the community, each year has been extremely successful.
In the YPA’s first year, it was decided that this would be the association’s primary community service project. Throughout each new annual campaign, YPA has been able to increase the number of backpacks delivered to children in the community.
Instead of relying heavily on corporate donations, this program is designed to get individual employees involved. The YPA begins each year by meeting with counselors and youth service center directors at the elementary schools within Boyd and Greenup counties. After being supplied with a list of school supplies and clothing sizes, YPA members are responsible for finding individuals to sponsor the children. Backpacks are returned to the Ashland Alliance office prior to the first week of school.
How to Get Involved
Participation in the backpack program can be achieved in one of the following four ways:
- Sponsor a child on your own. Pick one child and purchase all of the needed supplies.
- Sponsor with a group. Instead of taking on the responsibility for all of a child’s supplies, join with a coworker to sponsor a single child.
- Become a Business Coordinator. As a business coordinator you are our primary contact for your group or business. While this does carry some added responsibility, the most important part of the job is to help generate interest within the workplace. Ideally, you would generate a list of interested participants, and facilitate the sponsorship of children within the organization.
Many organizations in the area provide excellent examples of the results that can be achieved by having a business coordinator within the organization. Employees at Marathon Petroleum have taken on the responsibility of providing all of the requested backpacks at two elementary schools. Peoples Bank employees have been a vital part of the programs success over the past three years by setting goals and encouraging the involvement of associates and customers. The bank’s management has participated by sponsoring a contest in which teams are formed with the goal of finding sponsorship for the most backpacks. The employees at Kings Daughters Medical Center and Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital were also actively involved in the 2006 program due to excellent coordinators within the organization.
- Provide a monetary contribution to the Ashland Alliance Foundation for the benefit of the program. All contributions to the foundation are tax deductible.
Other Community Service Participation
- Wurtland baseball field cleanup
- Ashland Repair Fair
- First Steps to Financial Literacy: 2nd Grade Savings Education Project (Berenstain Bear Book “Dollars and Sense”)
- Contributions to the ACTC Emergency Scholarship Fund
- Greenup Habitat for Humanity
- Kentucky Kids Count