LAGRANGE, Ga. – Some parents and students are already back to school shopping with the new school year just around the corner. The District Attorney’s Office Troup County is collecting backpacks as a way to keep gangs from growing.
Marilyn Davis’ daughter is going into the fifth grade. Davis says she’s donated backpacks to different organizations in the past.
“I think it’s really good for people who are in need of it. I think they should utilize it from a safe place. We haven’t had to participate in that yet so I’ve been fortunate in that aspect,” Davis said.
If you are donating school supplies, make sure to donate them to a legitimate organization like the Coweta Judicial Circuit and their “Backpacks 4 Kids” drive.
“An initiative we’re trying to combat two issues: poverty with students not being able to obtain the essential school supplies for projects to further their education and to combat gangs,” said Assistant District Attorney Drew Case.
Case says gangs try to seek out younger kids to recruit.
“One way they do this is they know parents can’t afford the necessary school supplies or may need financial assistance to do this so what they do is they try to do these events, which under the guise of helping the community in which they are just looking for new recruits,” Case said.
Case says gangs are a growing problem in the state of Georgia.
“One way we are trying to stop the gangs themself is we want to eradicate and so the way we do that is we stop them from finding new recruits,” he explained.
Case hopes school supplies donated by the community will keep elementary age students from being influenced by gangs.
Backpack and school supply donations can be dropped off at the sheriff’s office, city police department or jail in any of the five counties in the Coweta Judicial Circuit. They are also accepting monetary donations online. They are hoping to have all donations in by July 31st.