School kits help kids in need across the world

These school kits are destined for children whose lives have been interrupted by war, disaster and poverty.

It’s back to school shopping time for thousands of Langley students, but Ten Thousand Villages Langley is once again collecting supplies for school kits destined for children whose lives have been interrupted by war, disaster and poverty.

Organized by its parent company, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), each kit contains four notebooks, four unsharpened pencils, ruler, large eraser and a package of 12 coloured pencils. These supplies are packed in hand-sewn fabric bags and distributed by MCC partner agencies in schools and orphanages in Afghanistan, Jordan, Kenya, Ukraine and many other countries. More than 117,000 school kits were distributed last year.

“It is extremely rewarding to be part of a project that brings happiness, hope and encouragement to so many children and their families,” said Olga Nickel, who manages the Ten Thousand Villages store at 20525 Fraser Hwy. in Langley, where supplies can be dropped off.

“In some countries children are not allowed to attend classes without school supplies and a MCC school kit makes it possible for them to go to school. Our efforts to buy a few extra school supplies can make such a big difference in the lives of children.”

Supporting education and empowering families is in keeping with the goals and objectives of Ten Thousand Villages, a fair trade organization which purchases products from more than 130 artisan groups in over 35 countries, giving them fair value for their work.

MCC is the relief, development and service arm of Mennonite and Brethren in Christ churches in Canada and the U.S.

Started in 1920, MCC is a non-profit organization which currently has approximately 1,100 workers around the world.

“People are truly at the heart of what we do,” Nickel said.

“Our desire is to help give artisans the hope, dignity, joy and respect that come from earning a decent living.”

Visit mcccanada.ca/kits/school/ or call 888 622-6337.