‘I think today was amazing’

‘I think today was amazing’
August 17
04:00 2017

Religion-based nonprofit gives over 560 backpacks for back to school

11-year-old Kyndall Williams has always had a heart for giving back.  From early on in her grade school years she and her mother April Reich have coordinated school supplies giveaways for classmates, started a non-profit organization and has written two books to help pre-teens deal with everyday situations.  Though her non-profit organization, The Kyndall Project, she held the second annual “Back to School Jam” at Rupert Bell Park on Saturday, Aug. 12.

The event included a full day of activities for the community to enjoy.  They provided food and drinks, musical performances from local artists, raffles and culminated with the backpack giveaway.  Each backpack was also loaded with school supplies and healthy snacks. 

Last year the organization was able to give away around 160 backpacks and supplies.  This year they more than tripled that total with over 560 backpacks.  They gave away every single backpack helping countless families not have to worry about backpacks and supplies for the upcoming year. 

“I think today went very well and I was happy with how many people we were able to help,” said Williams. 

Reich added, “I think today was amazing and there was a great turnout that I didn’t even anticipate this year.  I knew it was going to be bigger but I didn’t know how grand it was going to be.  With the performances that we had and the support from the community, it was a blessing for me and I hope it was a blessing for the community.”

According to Reich, she and her daughter keep God in mind with every venture they take on with the Kyndall Project.  They feel through blessing others they are blessing themselves.

The artists that performed during the event were Young Reid, Miss Sania, Tszaini P and Akilah.  Reich says she wanted to include the performances because she knows they are eliminating the arts programs in many school districts so they want to highlight that through the Kyndall Project.

“One thing with the Kyndall Project is that we want to uplift our youth especially, if they are doing something positive in the community,” said Reich.  “As far as music or dance or whatever they have going on, we are always for it.  I want to bring the arts back into the community because they are so important.”

The community was very appreciative for the generous gesture provided by the Kyndall Project.  Latasha Simmons says she brought her family out because last year’s event benefited her and her two children so much.

“I don’t think they really know how much of a benefit this is,” Simmons said.  “Many of us parents in this area do not have a lot of extra money, so what this allows me to save is great.  Every dollar counts in my house and this saved me a lot, so I thank them for this.”

Reich and Williams say they were happy to have helped so many individuals in the community but she feels there is more to be done.

“It makes us feel so good,” Reich and Williams said.  “It touches my heart and I felt like I was going to start crying because of the impact of the event.  We know we are doing something good for the community but to see the smiles on the kids’ and parents’ faces was great.” 

Going forward they want to continue to expand their reach in the community with the Kyndall Project.  They have a few ideas already in place to make next year’s event even better

Reich says that everyone told her that since they were able to do over 560 backpacks this year, their goal should be 1,000.  Reich says the Kyndall Project is a year-round organization because she knows kids will need more supplies as the year goes on as well as healthy snacks, so they will continue to work to better the community.


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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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