Education is a game changer. Education provides pathways out of poverty for children and youth by opening up new opportunities for a better future. Back to school is an expensive time of year, and for far too many families in Oxford County, those additional costs are an unbearable burden.
The Oxford Supplies4Students partners have worked with local companies, individuals, faith groups, employee groups, labour groups and service organizations to raise the funds necessary to ensure that no Oxford student in need is turned away. As the program has evolved over the past few years, particularly through the COVID-19 pandemic, we have gone from providing supports to 325 Oxford students to 955 grade JK to 12 students in September of 2021. That meant that 480 Oxford families, representing every single publicly funded school in our county, received assistance last year! Families requiring financial assistance receive a gift card per student to allow them to shop locally for the supplies they require.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada Inc. (TMMC) stepped up once again to provide financial support for the program; and this year their gift was used to inspire others throughout Oxford County to make a donation as well. Donations made to United Way Oxford for the Supplies4Students were matched up to $10,000, thanks to TMMC.