LCSD holds Duffel bag drive for teens

Lebanon Local

The Welcome Center at the Lebanon Community School District is holding a duffel bag drive in the month of May.

“Currently, the Welcome Center is serving close to 300 homeless students. About 75 of those students are unaccompanied homeless teens and that is that is the population I hope to serve with the duffel bags,” said LCSD community liaison Amy Souza.

Jackson Street Youth Shelter is sponsoring the items that will go into the duffel bags.

“We are putting shampoo, conditioner, socks, a fleece blanket, toothbrush, toothpaste and deodorant into each bag,” Souza said.

The bags will be distributed as needed.

“Since I started working in this position, I have learned that the teenagers I serve lose their clothing and personal items very quickly because they have no means to carry them from place to place so they get left and lost when they have to pick up and move,” Souza said. “The duffel bags are a way to carry their belongings with them to and from school and from place to place in a discrete way.”

For this reason, Souza is asking for “sporty” looking bags that won’t stand out from duffel bags other students carry on campus.

“I am looking for Adidas, Nike, Under Armor bags that are bigger and longer than the average backpack,” Souza said. “The idea is to provide something practical and trendy. These kids live in cycles of extreme poverty, so I love the idea of blessing them with something useful and that they feel excited about carrying around.”

Duffel bags may be dropped off at the Welcome Center, which is housed at the LCSD district office, between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

The district office is located at 485 S. Fifth St.

For more information, call 541-259-8907.