Unexpected pair of helpers collect donations before going back to school

Published 7:00 am Saturday, July 22, 2017

For many families, the hardest part about sending their children back to school isn’t saying goodbye, but sending them off without all of the requested school supplies. With lengthy and expensive school supplies lists, it’s not uncommon for some families to be unable to afford everything their child needs to make the back-to-school transition easy. After witnessing these families struggle first hand, an extraordinary pair of children decided to hold a back-to-school donation drive throughout Pearl River County and neighboring states.

Seven-year-old Brooklynne and 4-year-old Nora McCrory led the charge to collect back-to-school supplies for one purpose, “to make sure every kid has what they need” to get the best education they can, Brooklynne McCrory said.

“I have a heart to give back. I got that from my mom,” she said, pointing to Brittany McCrory.

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All hands were on deck in the McCrory family as they embarked on a new endeavor, going from business to business within Pearl River County and neighboring locations to ask if they can display their donation boxes. The boxes provide a place for customers to give anything, including pencils, paper, book bags and even cash. With little hesitation, many businesses allowed the family to drop off their donation boxes, and even helped fill them. Those businesses include Uniforms by Bales, Mark’s Auto Repair, Bodies by Tonya, Apple’s in Poplarville and other businesses in Diamondhead and even some in North Carolina.

“We know how expensive back-to-school supplies can get, especially if you don’t conveniently have any of the supplies to begin with. What this family is doing warms your heart, and to see the two girls involved in everything makes it even more special,” Uniforms by Bales owner Denise Bales said.

The donation drive quickly became a success as the boxes began to overflow with school supplies in the first week. Pencils, paper, binders, planners, markers, glue and more were found in each of the boxes. The only thing the McCrory’s wish they saw more of were backpacks. But thanks to a recent monetary donation from the M&M Machine Shop in Carriere and a Itworks give back event, Brittany and her husband Daniel McCrory said they raised nearly $200, which they will use to buy more backpacks.

“The best part about all of this is meeting with the families 1-on-1 and seeing their expression when you hand their kids the supplies they need for that year. It’s indescribable and that’s why we do it,” Brittany McCrory said.

“We have a passion to give back and help others. And it’s clear that the passion Brittany and I have is trickling down to our girls,” Daniel McCrory said.

Families in need of school supplies can contact Brittany McCrory on Facebook to meet or set up a time when they can go to any school within the county and pick up what they need from the family. Although the boxes were collected Friday, donations will still be accepted by the family through the same point of contact.

Brittany McCrory also said supplies will be available at the schools whose families need them.