For the ninth year, McDonald’s has fulfilled one of its core values and extended its reach beyond the golden arches above its doors and into neighboring communities to equip students headed back to school with some of the tools necessary to function in the classrooms. Through a longstanding partnership with St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Kirk, students residing in the Bains and Grants Town communities have been recipients of backpacks as many of them are members of the Kirk’s Sunday school. This year Commonwealth Bank also joined forces, earmarking 150 of its 10,000 backpacks distributed annually to the cause. Annually, McDonald’s donates over 600 backpacks.
“When a carpenter heads out to a job he usually always has his hammer, tape measure and square,” said Earla Bethel, president of DanBrad Limited, parent company of McDonald’s, and clerk of session at the Kirk. “It is equally important that our children in the communities we serve are not disadvantaged by their socioeconomic status, [through] no fault of their own, but placed on equal footing through these donations. McDonald’s is very proud to assist the students of Big Harvest and St. Andrew’s Kirk as they both provide a framework for establishing spiritual values and mentorship and focus on education through after-school programs and tutoring. We look forward to each and every child achieving success in the upcoming school year.”
The backpacks were filled with books, pens, pencils and other materials. Additionally, youngsters of the Big Harvest Community Sunday School also received supplies as both Sunday schools service the residents of Bains & Grants Town.
“One of my favorite traditions at St. Andrew’s Kirk is our back-to-school initiative in Bain and Grant’s Town,” said Pastor Bryn MacPhail, senior pastor of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Kirk. “We have deep affection for, and genuine interest in, the children of this community. We aspire to show our neighbors the love of Christ, and we are grateful for the opportunity that this event presents for us to demonstrate this.”
“It’s a tremendous blessing,” said John Ferguson, superintendent of Big Harvest Sunday School and retired assistant commissioner of police. “It augers well not only for the community but it allows us to enhance what we’re doing in the inner city through this donation to assist the underprivileged and at-risk youth. We are very grateful for Ms. Bethel and DanBrad Limited and we appreciate what they’ve done and what they’re doing and we appreciate them including Big Harvest in this gracious donation.”