Family Focus

Delta Sigma Theta alumnae donate 11,000 school supply items for kids in need

Our 9 School Tools campaign received a big donation to help local students get the tools they need for the school year.

The women of the Charlotte Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. collected nearly 11,000 school supplies on Sunday.

“Having the smallest thing as a notebook or pencil or even a fashionable book bag does mean a lot to a kid. It means more than not having it and you don’t want a kid to be the only one in the class,” said Melody Harris, president of the Charlotte Alumnae Chapter.

The ladies in red had a car parade and the members of the chapter drove up and dropped off their school supplies at the Delta House on Beatties Ford Rd.

“Back to school items are like a holiday on the calendar. We want to make sure that all kids, no matter what age, are represented well with the tools that they need for school,” Harris said.

Cars lined up for two hours to help on this day of good deeds.

“It is our mission to make sure that the students have the school supplies they need, so they feel successful and so they don’t feel left out,” said Cassandra Black, community involvement chairperson of the chapter.

A teacher herself, Black said that a lot of times she’ll dip into her own pocket to purchase school supplies for children.

Pencils, paper, notebooks and anything related to learning — sometimes, even clothing and toiletries — are some of the things teachers will dip into their own wallets to buy for students in need.

On average, teachers spend $1,000 on school supplies every year.

“These donations will not only help the students but the teachers too,” Black said.

All of the school supplies will be delivered to Classroom Central and distributed through its free store, which is a retail operation where teachers and other school personnel from eligible schools shop for free supplies.

The financial ramifications of the coronavirus have hit families hard over the past year, and families are finding it even more difficult to purchase school supplies for their kids to start the school year and not fall behind.

Many of the more vulnerable and low-income families depend on Classroom Central for assistance.

Since 1997, in partnership with Classroom Central and Communities in Schools of Charlotte-Mecklenburg, the WSOC-TV 9 School Tools program has collected school supplies, which are then distributed free to students in grades K-12.

Classroom Central’s free store is a retail operation where teachers and other school personnel from eligible schools shop for free supplies throughout the academic year.

All materials distributed are used to create inviting learning environments and to support the academic and personal growth of students whose families lack the resources needed to purchase school supplies.

Covering 22 counties, 9 School Tools is the largest school-supply drive in the Carolinas and will run from now through Aug. 31.

Through the end of the month, you can also donate the school supplies at any Arby’s, Ashley HomeStore, E.R. Plumbing Services, and at Charlotte Fire Department stations.


Financial donations can also be made to the 9 School Tools program that supports Classroom Central.


Learn more about 9 School Tools at

If you have an inspiring story to share, email Kevin Campbell, public affairs manager at WSOC-TV/WAXN-TV/Telemundo Charlotte, at