By Terry Rogers
In late August, Milford Police Department began promoting donations of school supplies that could be used to benefit families who may not be able to purchase them before the start of school. After the start of the year, the police donated a large quantity of supplies to Milford School District to be used for students who may not have what they need for the start of school.
“We promoted the collection for the second year in a row,” Sgt. Robert Masten of Milford Police Department said. “We asked through several sources, including social media and traditional media outlets. We collected a wide variety of supplies and school uniform shirts. It included hand sanitizer, pencils, paper, pads, uniform polo shirts, folders, pencil boxes, etc. All supplies were given to us by the public and we were just the avenue to get them where they needed to be.” Sgt. Masten said that the department reached out to the district to identify the needs of students.
Sgt. Masten said that Milford Police Department sees a need in the area to support those who are less fortunate and that they find that the public wants to help in whatever way they can. He said that the police hoped that by taking the initiative, it would make it easier for citizens to provide assistance and help students who may be lacking the basic needs for school.
“Any organization can do the same thing, they just need to promote it and the public will come through,” Sgt. Masten said. “We would suggest researching the schools who are receiving donations to make sure you are asking for things that are needed and will be used. For example, if you want to ask for clothing, be sure what is being asked for matches a uniform policy or dress code at a particular school.”
Everything requested by the Milford Police Department was specifically for Milford School District. Sgt. Masten said that the department tries to have all supplies to the district before the start of school so they can inventory what they have on hand and what is still needed.
“We had some unique ways people donated this year,” Sgt. Masten said. “The construction staff at Bayhealth Sussex Campus got together and made a joint donation. We had two others where parties were held and they asked attendees to bring school supply donations in lieu of gifts.”
School supplies are needed throughout the school year, not just immediately after school starts. Any organization or individual who wants to create a school supply donation program should contact Milford School District’s Administrative Office at 302-422-1600.