OKC churches join together to host back-to-school event

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) — A group of churches in Oklahoma City joined together on Saturday to help kids and families as they head back to the classroom.

The churches gave away hundreds of thousands of items, hoping to take some stress off those in need.

“We’ve historically been calling it Feeding 5000 and more because we gave away 5,000 backpacks and school supplies to the students,” said Terry Bates, Lead Pastor at OKC Faith Church.

Car after car after car was seen waiting in line Saturday morning at OKC Faith Church’s back-to-school event.

“I’m always excited every year. We get up super early in the morning and start rolling burritos and doing school supplies,” said volunteer Erica Mitchell.

But this year, they did things a bit differently.

“This year, we changed the name to Hope in the City because we wanted to invite four other campuses to join us in the distribution as well. And so this year, across five different campuses, we’re giving away 5,000 backpacks, over 100,000 school supplies, 10,0000 burritos, and just a lot of great things that we believe will resource and help families,” Bates said.

Families with school-age kids lined up to receive backpacks stuffed with all the classroom essentials like pencils, pens, crayons, folders, and paper.

“We actually have two resources. One is the backpack with the school supplies. Has about 30 school supplies in each of the backpacks for the students. Then we have what we call a family bag, which is one per car. Inside that family bag are some resources to support that family,” Bates said.

Bates said this event has been going on for 19 years now and is happy to expand it to reach even more kids.

“We’ve got everybody lined up, ready to go and we’re getting ready to make a massive distribution,” Bates said.

Volunteers and even a few Disney celebrities were on hand to pass out goodies as cars made it through the line.

They say the early wake-up call was well worth it.

“I don’t have a favorite part. Everything is my favorite part,” Mitchell said. “Seeing everybody just come through and just be excited about what we’re doing for them.”

And the giveaways didn’t end Saturday.

Over the next few Sundays, OKC Faith Church will be giving away thousands of dollars in free gas cards. If you couldn’t make it out this weekend, you’ll have another chance on August 22nd and 29th.

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