Helena Bridges goes BIG on kindness!
100% fill rate on posted needs so far in Helena, Alabama...thanks to the amazing advocates in Helena Schools and the kindness of the community.
Learn more in this ABC 33/40 news story from Birmingham:
Neighborhood Bridges Program helps communities identify and fill needs for students
by Lauren WalshMonday, December 2nd 2019AA
A new program is helping to meet the needs of children across central Alabama, whether it be shoes, a warm jacket or a notebook for school.
Caroline Kidd is the counselor at Helena High School. She and teachers in Helena's schools are on the lookout for students' needs. That could be a hygiene kit, a calculator or a pair of pants.
“I don’t think we’re aware of happening right under out nose sometimes,” Kidd said of the needs she sees.
When a need is identified, Kidd posts it in the city's neighborhood bridge system. It goes on social media and in a weekly email to people who sign up to receive it.
She recalls the time she posted for a pair of pants.
“I posted the need and we probably had like 12 people within two hours say they were willing to go out and get him a pair of pants,” she said. “It was really neat to see the community wants to help and they’re willing to.”
The Neighborhood Bridges program started in Hoover earlier this year and has now been expanded into at least ten communities.
Helena began the program several months ago.
The child-in-need stays anonymous.
The givers take the need to a local fire station.
Firefighters take it to the school counselor.
“We’ve had clothes, shoes, jackets, calculators,” Kidd said. “We’ve had a situation where a family needed supplies for a home emergency they had. We’ve had gift cards for families who needed gas money.”
“I’m glad someone’s paying attention and that we can help children,’ said Stacy DeVoe.
Stacy DeVoe is one person who is helping to fill the needs that are posted weekly.
“I loved the idea of being able to help kids, being able to help kids that could possibly be my kids friends that are in need,” she said.
In Helena, there is no shortage of givers.
“We’ve had 100 percent needs filled,” Kidd said with a big smile.
Pelham is the newest city to launch the program and will begin posting needs this week.
Other cities with the program include Tuscaloosa, Trussville, Alabaster and Haleyville.
You can see the needs and sign up for the emails at https://www.neighborhoodbridges.org/.