Each year my office sponsors a back-to-school project where we collect donations from local attorneys and spend the money on school supplies, which we give to the children of our poor clients and other needy families. And each year, I end up with too many pencils, not enough book bags, and at least one child who stresses out!
This year, we started late because I was on vacation. And school started so early--August 3! But we've collected $750 plus in-kind contributions from donor attorneys, assembled 36 bags, and distributed most of them so far. Today, one woman arrived at the speed of lightning after receiving the telephone call that we had school supplies for her 4 children, and she had tears streaming down her face as she practically danced out of the office with the box. Another just kept saying thanks over and over again.
Saipan is depressed economically, but there are still generous people out there helping make this project a success, and still good manners and gratitude that make us smile. And there will be at least some kids who have a little reason to go to school and try harder--if just to sharpen those new pencils, uncap the highlighters, or play with the zippers on the book bags.