MANSFIELD – The South Central Local School district received a generous donation of 70 tote bags filled with school supplies, starting the first week of school back on a high note.
For the past five years, Kim Riggenbach, an independent director at Thirty-One Gifts, has collaborated with local businesses that sponsor bags to donate school supplies to their school of choice. This year, she was delighted after reaching out to Bo Lacey Construction and hearing they would rather choose a school district rather than one school.
Kevin Lacey, co-owner of Bo Lacey Construction loves to give back wherever he can, whenever he has the means. In the past year, he’s seen how much people have been in need.
“There's people out there that were really affected by COVID and losing their jobs,” Lacey said. “And we know from just when we interview people for new positions and the stories they tell us about how they lost their job. It is tough for some people right now.”
Lacey and his wife, who is a school teacher, are always having conversations about how much school teachers are willing to provide school supplies for their classrooms by their own means. The Thirty-One Gifts project gave them the opportunity to put less stress on teachers at the beginning of the year.
“[Teachers] spend their own money in the classroom... and I think that this is a way to give back that it's not quite so much for them to have to do. And that's a way for us to give that to the teachers, and then on to the students,” Riggenbach said.
“I always see that Bo Lacey is always so generous in trying to help the community out, and I wondered if he would be interested in this, and I reached out to them,” Riggenbach said. “And right away, they were full force, wanting to get away and give back.”
Tara Carney, client success advocate at Bo Lacey Construction, helped orchestrate sponsoring the bags. She’s also helped with other philanthropic initiatives Bo Lacey Construction participates in every year with a $5,000 budget.
“We just feel it's important to give back,” Carney said. “It's just something that the company has always done and believed in, and the timing was just right when [Riggenback] called and asked us to do it. We just jumped all over it.”
Bo Lacey Construction gives back to the community in numerous ways through different nonprofit organizations including both Ashland and Richland United Way, Harmony House, the Domestic Violence Shelter in Richland County, the Salvation Army Kroc Center and many more.
Riggenbach delivered the tote bags alongside Lacey on Wednesday, and all 70 were quickly given away. Carney said on behalf of Bo Lacey Construction, they were proud to collaborate with Riggenbach.
“Kim has a huge heart, and she's always giving back as well,” Carney said. "So I knew when she reached out that it was going to be a perfect partnership between the two companies.”