EASLEY — In preparation for the end of summer vacation, Tracy and Sunshine Gantt Ministries is holding a two-day Back-To-School Bash to help alleviate the costs for some local students while also promoting unity within the community.
Backpacks, school supplies and free haircuts will be distributed Aug. 13 and Aug. 14 in two locations in Easley during the inaugural event. Food, door prizes, games, jump houses, and music will supply the entertainment.
“We had a similar event two years ago with backpack giveaways and we were already planning to bring the program back when a local stylist contacted me,” Sunshine Gantt said about the evolution of the event. “She was interested in donating free haircuts to children who needed them for school but couldn’t afford it. We decided to combine the two and it’s bigger than we thought it was going to be.”
On Aug. 13, the event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Pope Field, 301 Pope Field Road in Easley. School supplies and backpacks will be made available. The giveaway is designed to help alleviate the expense of buying back to school supplies that many lower income families face.
Students must register by contacting Shantae White at 864-659-0471 to take part.
The Gantts have also partnered with the City of Easley, Easley Fire Department and Easley Police Department. Easley Fire Department personnel will be distributing supplies and backpacks to students and families.
Sunshine Gantt said the two-day event is about the children of the community but it’s also to promote unity within the community.
“We want to promote unity. With all that’s going on in the news and this racial war going on and the situation with law enforcement, we felt it was important to be unified beyond race,” Gantt said. “We want the world to know Easley is united and can come together as a community and give as a whole and show the love of Christ.”
The Aug. 14 event will be hosted from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. by Upstate College of Cosmetology in Easley. Volunteers from the school will be donating their time and giving free haircuts. Appointments are required. Call Upstate College of Cosmetology at 864-442-6647 to set up an appointment.
Gannt said volunteers and donations from the public have helped get the event off the ground but she was especially thankful for help from Upstate College of Cosmetology and S.M.O.O.O.T.H. Inc., a charity run by NFL wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, a former Clemson University wide receiver.
“The book bags we have for the kids were donated by S.M.O.O.O.T.H., similar to the back to school event they sponsored in Clemson recently, and we can’t thank them enough,” Gantt said. “Upstate College of Cosmetology, after we had one stylist interested, contacted us and had others who wanted to volunteer. The problem was we didn’t have a location to handle the haircuts with more stylists donating time. They didn’t hesitate and offered to host it at their location.”
Contact Tracy and Sunshine Gantt Ministries at 864-202-1222 for more information on volunteering or to make a donation.
Reach D. C. Moody at 864-855-0355.