JOHNSON CITY, TN (WJHL) – One week ago today was our Founder’s Day at News Channel 11 — the day we mark the anniversary of our company’s founding by giving back to this community that supports us every day.
This year we decided to help an amazing local program that helps children and families get ready to go back to school.
As ABC Tri-Cities’ Ann Carter reports it was a productive day that came with a big surprise, and the realization there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done.
News Channel 11, ABC Tri-Cities and Good Samaritan Ministries teamed up to help families in need get ready to send kids back to school. Staff members from WJHL-TV volunteered at Good Samaritan Ministries from 4:30 a.m. through 6 p.m. Friday, June 16th by collecting donations and filling back-to-school backpacks for 1,500 economically challenged local students.
The event marked the Founder’s Day of Caring, a project supported by WJHL’s parent company Nexstar Media Group. Employees were encouraged to volunteer time during their regular work day to help a charity selected by a committee of employees.
“Back in February, our team started brainstorming to find a way to really make an impact,” said Josh Smith, news anchor and co-chair of WJHL-TV’s Founder’s Day Steering Committee. “We knew from the start that we wanted to do something to help children and their families, and we wanted to actually put some sweat into the project. Every day we report on needs in our community. On this day, we wanted to get out and do something about it.”
After considering several options, the steering committee selected the Good Samaritan Ministries Back 2 School Program.
The Good Samaritan Ministries “Back 2 School Program” provides school supplies and two new outfits for pre-registered children. The gifts are stuffed into backpacks and distributed to children by Good Samaritan at a picnic later this summer.
Work began before sunrise for the WJHL volunteers who collected donations at Good Samaritan Ministries headquarters in downtown Johnson City. For the rest of the day, WJHL volunteers stuffed donated items into 1,500 backpacks. Portions of the Founder’s Day of Caring were broadcast live during News Channel 11 and ABC Tri-Cities newscasts.
More information on the Back 2 School Program: http://www.goodsamjc.org/back-2-school-program.html
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