For want of a pencil, the boy was unable take notes in class. For want of notes, the boy didn’t understand the lesson and couldn’t do his homework. For want of homework, he received a failing grade. For want a passing grade, the boy felt a failure and gave up on school.

All for the want of a pencil.

With acknowledgement to Benjamin Franklin who included the original proverb in his Poor Richard’s Almanac, the message is as true today as it was in the 1700s.

For a child, the seemingly smallest of things – such as the lack of a pencil and paper to be able to do their school work – is not insignificant, it can have a lasting impact on their life.

For thousands of children in Appalachia, it is tragic that they will go through a similar heartbreaking experience on their first day of school when they arrive in class without the supplies they need to be able to do their schoolwork.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Right now, we are working to distribute a total of 1,250 backpacks filled to the brim with school supplies for elementary school children and 500 junior high students so they are ready, willing, and ABLE to do their classwork on the very first day of the new school year.