THE CITY OF PELL – The Pell City school system received a grant from the United Way of Central Alabama to help students in need this school year.
Pell City Superintendent Dr. James Martin announced at the regular Pell City School Board meeting on Tuesday that the school system’s head nurse, Dorian Rich, recently received $3,733 from the United Way Children’s Fund.
Rich said the grant is intended to help the school system’s own fund for needy children.
She said the system has a long working relationship with United Way over the fund through grants that must be applied annually. Rich said the amount given by the organization varies from year to year, but they have contributed to the fund for nearly two decades.
“We’ve been in partnership with them since about 2004,” she said. “I can’t say enough good things about Centraide and all they have done for us.
The fund is intended to help students from kindergarten to grade 12 meet basic or emergency needs. Rich said the fund is used to help students in need with items such as clothing and school supplies, as well as help with prescriptions and dental braces. She said the fund has also helped with things like supplies for students with diabetes.
Rich said students are referred to the program by teachers or counselors. She said while the number of students needing help changes from year to year, the fund is typically used to help more than 100 students each school year. She said making sure students have what they need ultimately helps them in school.
“We want them to work in school and when you don’t have what you need, you can’t,” she said.
Rich said the fund is also used to help students with emergency needs. She said that a few years ago, in one instance, a local family lost their home to a fire and the fund was used to buy new shoes, clothes and supplies for students in the family.
“We have the fund even for things like that,” she said.
Rich said the other major contributor to the fund is the Our Lady of the Lake chapter of the Knights of Columbus. She said the fraternal organization has been a supporter of the fund for more than 10 years. Rich said the organization holds an annual fundraiser around Memorial Day and also recently donated to the fund with the grant.
“We appreciate the United Way and the Knights of Columbus,” she said. “It’s a good thing for us.”