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Hospital, community partners kick off school supply drive

Desert View Hospital needs your help.

The medical facility, in partnership with the Nye Communities Coalition and the Nye County School District, is looking for donations of school supplies to hand out to approximately 500 children during their annual Back-to-School Health Fair on Aug. 10.

There are more than 300 children currently attending schools in Nye County who are considered homeless or without a permanent residence to call their own.

In light of those statistics, DVH and its partners want to make the back to school transition easier this year for families by providing free supplies to students who attend the health fair. The event will also feature no-cost immunizations, sports physicals and vision and dental screenings to reduce back-to-school costs as well.

The hospital is hoping to further efforts of other community businesses also collecting school supplies, such as Valley Electric Association’s Fill-the-Bucket campaign, which begins Aug. 17, to provide free materials to as many Pahrump children as they can.

Meagan Kowalski, director of marketing for Desert View, said so far efforts to collect enough school supplies to reach their goal have been unsuccessful. As of Monday afternoon, the hospital had less than half of the donations they needed.

So now Desert View, NyECC and NCSD have turned to the Pahrump community for help. Kowalski said the hospital has set up several donation bins around town for people to drop off donations of new school supplies for the health fair.

“The more supplies we have, the more kids we can help,” Kowalski said.

The list was derived from supply lists from all 13 grade levels in the school district last year.

Although Desert View is seeking large amounts of each item, even a donation of a single pack of markers, pens or paper can go a long way, Kowalski said.

“If someone donates only one pack of pencils, we’ll take it; if they want to donate 80 packs, we’ll take those, too. Every little bit can make a big difference,” she said.

Donation bins are currently being set up in the hospital lobby, room six of the NyECC building and at the Pahrump Valley Chamber of Commerce.

If they cannot collect enough supplies to provide for their goal of 500 children, Kowalski said the donations they do receive will go to those deemed most in need by the school district.

“We’d like to be able to hand them out to as many children as possible regardless of financial status,” she said.

Donations will be accepted through Aug. 7.

“I challenge every business and organization in Pahrump to make a reasonable donation,” Kowalski said. “We support their businesses and programs and these kids are the ones who will grow up to work for them or purchase from them in the future. So let’s show these kids we care and help them by providing free school supplies.”

If more school supplies than needed are donated during the collection period, Kowlaski said the hospital will give them to the school district to hand out as it sees fit.

For those who would rather make a monetary donation, checks made out to the Nye Communities Coalition with a note made in the memo line that it is for the health fair, will also be accepted as well.

Children must be present with their parents at the health fair in order to receive the donated materials.

The Back-to-School Health Fair will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aug. 10.

For more information call Kowalski at 775-751-7120 or call the NyECC at 775-727-9970.

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