Iowa Troop Pantry distributes school supplies to military famili - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Iowa Troop Pantry distributes school supplies to military families

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) -

Thinking about the first day of school can be overwhelming.

"Scared-ish," said third grader Everley Ayala-Pagan when asked how she was feeling.

Thinking about the cost of getting ready for the first day of school can strike fear in parents as well.

"Kids need a lot of school supplies these days," said Stephanie Massow, a mother of four, whose husband served with the Air National Guard.

It may not seem like much but by the time you add in pens, pencils, crayons, markers, and notebooks, the cost of school supplies can add up rather quickly.

 "A mom told me that it cost her $100 dollars per child this year for her school supplies," said Le  Ann Tyson, founder of the Iowa Troop Pantry in Iowa City. 

The Iowa Troop Pantry is known for the help it provides for men and women in the military, sending care packages stuffed with basic necessities abroad to those deployed.

But now the non-profit is looking to help the families who sacrifice so much while their veterans are gone.

Saturday the Iowa Troop Pantry teamed up with a host of local businesses, distributing some 250 bags filled with school supplies to these military families.

"The families back home are warriors just like their soldier or their marine so we felt like we wanted to do a little something extra for the family unit," Tyson said. 

Carlos Ayala-Pagan serves as an army recruiter in Cedar Rapids.  He is also a father of five.

He says the donated supplies go a long way for his family.

"When you're kind of away from the military base you lose out on some stuff that you had access to as soldiers.  People that are willing to donate and help out, that's excellent," Ayala-Pagan said.

The hope for these families is that the first day of school feels a little more comfortable this year.

"It's really nice for people to donate it to us so that we can have school supplies," Everley Ayala-Pagan said. 

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