122nd Support Unit families start drive for school supplies

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Picture Iraqi children sitting in a tiny classroom with 60-80 other people.

The classroom has a leaking roof and no windows. The building that the classroom is in has no water, no restrooms and sometimes no electricity.

Sadly, this is what thousands of Iraqi children experience daily as they seek an education.

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The families of Dallas County’s 122nd Support Unit hope to help.

“We are encouraging churches and businesses to get involved,” said Sarah Hartman. “I wanted to get this community involved since this is where the group is housed.”

Hartman is the Chairperson of the Selma Family Readiness Group (SFRG), an organization that exists to support the families of the deployed 122nd Unit.

The SFRG is in the process of organizing a school supply drive for the children in Iraq. “We asked them (the 122nd Unit) what they needed, and they said school supplies,”said Hartman.

Hartman is encouraging people to donate notebooks, paper, coloring books, pens, pencils, crayons, markers, chalk, rulers, and soccer balls.

“The children like to play with soccer balls,” Hartman said with a smile.

“When my husband Carl and the rest of the Unit left on Nov. 9, there was a lot of support for them from the community,” said Hartman. “We hope to get that same level of support on this (school supply drive).”

The two major drop off locations will be at Meadowview Elementary

School, and the Selma-Dallas County Public Library Youth Department.

“Even if people don’t buy supplies, they can donate money to help with the shipping cost, or donate money and we will buy the supplies,” said Hartman.

The drive is scheduled to run from March 1-March 31. “We intend to ship the supplies out to Iraq during the first or second week of April,” said Hartman.

The SFRG has not set a goal for the amount of supplies that they want to collect.

“We mainly want this to be a project to pull the community together and to recognize the need in other countries.”

For more information on the Iraq School Supply Drive, please contact Hartman at (334) 412-0801.