(Photo above, Family Access Network’s Amy Naegeli and Mid Oregon Marketing VP Kyle Frick hold backpacks next to the Mid Oregon van. Courtesy of Mid Oregon Credit Union)
Mid Oregon Credit Union kicked off its annual Supplies4Schools supply drive with a record donation from a single donor who dropped off more than 140 backpacks stuffed with school supplies to its Redmond branch location.
“I am always amazed at the generosity of the people in this community,” says Marketing VP Kyle Frick. “Every year our members surprise us with their commitment to helping children get a successful start at school.”
The donor, Vikki Olds of Redmond, says that she spent most of the year purchasing school supplies and assembling the backpacks. Her husband Andre and son-in-law Cameron helped to load a trailer with the backpacks to deliver at the Redmond Mid Oregon Branch on Wednesday.
Olds says that she began this project after years as a bus driver in La Pine. “I would see kids without coats or socks or warm clothes,” she said. “I just couldn’t get it out of my mind. I felt bad to think of these kids not having what they needed for school.”
Although Olds shops the sales and finds good prices on all the supplies she purchases, she says she still spends a few thousand dollars on the effort. “This is my way of tithing for the year,” she says. She fills high-quality backpacks for younger children through high school ages with supplies that include a three-ring binder and paper, pens and pencils, zipper pouch, standard or scientific calculator, hygiene items and other tools.
The Supplies4Schools fundraiser and supply drive is underway during the month of August at all seven locations within Mid Oregon Credit Union’s service area. All donations of cash and supplies stay in the community where they are collected. In most communities, Mid Oregon partners with Family Access Network and other local agencies to distribute the supplies to students in Deschutes, Crook and Jefferson Counties who may lack the basic necessities to be successful at school.
Olds challenged other Central Oregon residents to match her donations in the other communities including Prineville, Madras, La Pine, Sisters and Bend. “I know there are people out there who have the ability to give more,” she says.