Wanting to help low-income families with learning tools, a Mon Repos-based NGO distributed textbooks and stationery supplies on Monday in San Fernando.
Aspiring Minds Foundation (AMF) members are hoping to give out a total of 200-plus packages in the two-day "Back to home-school supplies distribution" drive.
It started on Monday at Celebration Centre at Gransaul Street, San Fernando, and continues Tuesday.
Director Betty Ann Byng said the NGO started its book drive in 2018 to help educate the youths. The NGO wanted to give children basic information about TT.
The latest drive targets standards four and five students, although it caters to other students.
"The NGO bought textbooks through the financial support of many people and organisations. We did not get all the books. So, we are looking for help to get them. Ensuring that children have textbooks is our priority," Byng said.
"We target standard four and five students because they will be preparing for SEA exams. We also cater to high school students because they too are preparing for exams. Anyone who wants to partner with us can do so because we want to support the youths."
Byng said AMF got the booklists from schools in the community as well as from parents and guardians.
"We purchased additional books for schools like St Paul’s Anglican, San Fernando Boys’ RC, and Mon Repos RC," she said. "One of the challenges students face, especially with covid19, is they got devices, but many of them did not have textbooks.
"People are not supposed to photocopy or send images of the book electronically. It was a necessity that children have their own books."
Most recipients pre-registered for the packages, but the NGO caters to walk-ins as well. Anyone can visit the centre to get a package.
People must walk with copies of the child’s booklist, the child’s report card or school acceptance letter, and the identification card of the person collecting the package.
Last year, owing to the pandemic, the NGO was unable to host fundraising events.
AMF got support from many organisations this year, including Union Hall South Landerz Steel Orchestra in San Fernando, and the National Lotteries Control Board.
On behalf of AMF, Byng thanked everyone and all the organisations who helped with the drive.
She also appealed to the public to donate schoolbooks or money to help contribute to developing young people.
People can donate via the NGO’s Republic Bank account, no 080800573201.