Optimist Club Provides Activity Kit Backpacks

From L to R: Brandon Blanchard, David Wilke, Blaine Shutts, Andrea Brownlee and Lorraine Sinnott.

From L to R: Brandon Blanchard, David Wilke, Blaine Shutts, Andrea Brownlee and Lorraine Sinnott.

Oskaloosa, Iowa – Helping young children during a stressful moment is the motivation behind a donation from the Optimist Club of Oskaloosa.

Activity kit backpacks were presented by Optimist representatives Lorraine Sinnott and Andrea Brownlee, Optimist Club President, on Monday to the Oskaloosa Police Department and the Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office.

Members donated bags filled with small toys, crayons and coloring books to help children, who are being impacted by a stressful situation, better cope. Oskaloosa Police Officers and Mahaska County Deputies will carry the bags with them in their squads.

“Any time we deal with a young person in a bad situation, traumatic type situation, this will be something good to give to them. Kind of get them distracted from what’s going on while we’re doing what we need to do. Hopefully comfort them a little bit,” said Oskaloosa Police Chief Jake McGee.

The Optimist Club will then continue to supply more activity backpacks as needed.

Optimist Club President Andrea Brownlee said that a couple of other clubs in the state have done similar programs. “We thought it was a good idea. Something we could do to help the community.”

According to the Optimist International website, “Adult volunteers join Optimist Clubs to conduct positive service projects in their communities that are aimed at providing a helping hand to youth. With their upbeat attitude, Optimist Club members help empower young people to be the best that they can be.”

To learn more about the Optimist Club of Oskaloosa, or to help donate towards the project, visit their Facebook Page HERE.

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