Several local businesses have teamed together to form the first Local Businesses United School Supply Drive to help kids in Marshalltown, from kindergarten through eighth grade with school supplies.
Dylan and Kelsey Schumacher, Mason Williams and Tiffany Harris, are the organizers and some of the business owners who have teamed together for the drive.
Businesses that are helping out are Schumacher Construction LLC, Williams Plumbing, Tom Harris Auctions, Alfonso Medina’s La Carreta Iowa Mexican Grill and A&A Concrete.
Helping kids in the community was extremely important for each group member.
“When brainstorming ideas for how we could give back to the community, we all agreed that our number one priority would be the kids in our community,” Tom Harris, of Tom Harris Auctions said, “With the timing of our idea being so close to the beginning of the school year, we decided on fundraising for school supplies. We wanted to help kids who may not have the luxury of getting the full list of supplies as well as local parents who struggle to purchase supplies every year.”
Schumacher said his personal experience led him to create the school drive.
“I grew up in Marshalltown, being one of those kids who didn’t have all their school supplies when school started, or had just a few things,” Schumacher said.
Schumacher said the process in creating the LBU School Supply Drive happened in an organic way. Medina, owner of La Carreta and A&A Concrete based out of Marshalltown, was instrumental in getting the “LBU” school supply drive off the ground.
“Alfonso and I originally teamed up to help him expand his concrete business he just opened,” he said. “I made a trip to Texas earlier this year with supplies and Alfonso was the biggest help to me. He spread the word and helped get the message out of what we were trying to do. So, when he reached out to me about expanding his business, I was thrilled to be a part of that.”
After the effort was made public, more forces joined. Schumacher brought Tom Harris Auctions on board as Kelsey is the accountant for Tom Harris. Schumacher said the company has a major footprint in the community and they wanted to bring everyone together.
Williams said he wanted to work with Schumacher Construction and La Carreta after seeing other projects they had done.
“I liked when La Carreta helped pay for school lunch debt and how Schumacher Construction drove supplies down to Texas after their winter storm,” Williams said, “They have a strong vision of helping the community and working together for a better future.”
Harris said the group wanted to show the community that small businesses in Marshalltown could unite for a good cause. They hope to expand and add more local small businesses as time goes on, showing both support for each other as well as the community.
He said the group created a GoFundMe to provide a quick and easy option for those who wanted to participate in donating, but may not have the time or opportunity to go out and purchase supplies.
Schumacher said all of the fundraiser organizers are fortunate to be successful in their businesses and wanted to raise as much money as possible for the kids.
“Alfonso came up with idea that once the drive is over, we would match and contribute dollar for dollar what was put in,” Schumacher said, “I’ve seen a lot of success with GoFundMe in the past and I’m hoping we get a chance to help as many kids as we can.”
Harris is confident in the Marshalltown community and their willingness to give.
“The people here have the same desire to give back as the businesses involved in the LBU. Working together, I believe that we can make a huge impact for the local kids,” Harris said.
For every dollar donated by the public, the businesses will match. Schumacher said the group’s ultimate goal is the GoFundMe page will raise $10,000, which will be matched for a total of $20,000.
Schumacher has a personal goal of 700 kids benefitting from the LBU School Supply Drive and plans to provide many kids with hats and gloves for the winter. He also hopes to make the drive an annual event and planning is already in the works for a winter drive.
Until Aug. 3, the drive will take donations toward purchasing school supplies for kids, as well as setting up drop off locations.
Items can be dropped off at:
• La Carreta
• Spahn & Rose
• Iowa Wholesale Supply
• Tom Harris Auctions.
Supplies will be handed out at Tom Harris Auctions at the mall from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Aug. 7, while supplies last. If you’re interested in donating money to the GoFundMe for the “LBU,” the link is: https://gofund.me/045a6e60
ITEMS SOUGHT FOR SCHOOL DRIVE
Items for the LBU School Supply Drive must be new and unopened. Donations that are being sought after are:
• #2 pencils
• Glue sticks
• 24 ct. crayons
• Large erasers
• Pencil boxes
• Markers — both washable and dry erase
• Two pocket folders which are solid colors
• Notebooks — both wide-ruled spiral and composition
• Pens – black and blue
• Colored pencils
Contact Marquetta Evans
at 641-753-6611 or