The new school year is fast approaching. Whether you’re ready or not, back to school shopping is right around the corner. For many area families the required school supply list just doesn’t fit in an already tight budget. As an example, 80% of the students at one of our local schools receive free or reduced-fee lunch. School administrators have asked our parish to provide supplies for over 300 children. When shopping for your own family, please consider picking up some extra items for these children in need. Take your kids! What a great opportunity for kids to see your faith in action.

With unemployment and other economic factors many parents are struggling and are unable to provide the basic school supplies their children need to be effective. In addition, schools across the country are facing budget cuts and lack the funding to purchase necessary supplies. To combat this problem in our area the St. Boniface Community Outreach Committee hosts an annual School Supply Drive. Listed below are the dates for the 2017 program.


July 22/23. Collect supplies after all three Masses.
July 29/30. Collect supplies after all three Masses.
August 5/6. Collect supplies after all three Masses.
August 7. Sort supplies in the church Hall at 6 pm and make ready for delivery. This is a terrific time for families to volunteer.

For more information contact Cindy Zach at isufan1@yahoo.com

Creating another Successful School Supply Drive
Many families are struggling to provide the basic school supplies their children need to be effective. In addition, schools across the country are facing severe budget cuts and lack the funding to purchase necessary supplies. To combat that problem in our area Cindy Zach and members of the Community Outreach program at St. Boniface are hosting their annual school supply drive. To learn more about this important program, we visited with Cindy Zach.

Q. It’s hard to believe in our affluent area that children don’t have the necessary supplies to start school. Can you tell us more about this need?
A. This is a fair question with a surprising answer. While many in our area have the means to donate to this drive, others are recipients. As an example, Crestview Elementary in West Des Moines (8 miles from St. Boniface) is the school most in need across the schools we support. 80% of the students that attend this school are on free or reduced lunch. This demonstrates that there is a diverse population in our suburbs, which are generally perceived as affluent. Even in these areas there are still pockets of need. These are the students we target with our drive.

Q. What are some of the schools in our area that we provide supplies to?

A. Believe it or not, the St. Boniface school drive supports seven school districts across 16 different schools. Districts include Waukee, Dallas Center-Grimes, West Des Moines, Earlham, Des Moines, Urbandale, and two Catholic schools. Some of the schools we support include Eason Elementary, South Prairie Elementary, and Holy Family Catholic school.

Q. What can people do to combat this problem?
A. People can help in multiple ways:
• Donate items off the list we will supply in July
• Donate money for targeted items to be purchased
• Sort and “stuff” the items for delivery
• Deliver boxed up items to our point of contact at a school

Q. Have you heard back from any of the schools that we have donated supplies to?
A. Yes! All schools are grateful. Those in the most need are quite excited to be included in our generosity and welcome any amount of items that can be donated.