Thousands of local kids ready for school thanks to Convoy of Hope

WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

Hundreds of volunteers packed McAdam’s park Saturday morning to help thousands of kids kick the school year off right.

“We've got 6,000 backpacks,” said Staci Cathcart, executive director of Convoy Hope - Wichita. “We have got shoes and immunizations, sports and school physicals.”

All free and all things convoy of hope event organizers say not only helps get students ready but give them confidence.

"It makes me feel pretty good,” said sixth-grade student Bryan Epperson. "Like the notebooks and the pencils and all, this is gonna be very helpful. And plus, we get free shoes too."

And students aren't the only ones who got what they needed, parents got help as well.

Convoy of Hope helps those in need by giving them access to things like free groceries, health and dental screenings, haircuts and more.

"It's a lot of people out here who can't afford any of that stuff or struggling really bad, so it's a good thing that they're doing,” said one mother.

Luis Moreno added, "It's pretty cool seeing the community just come together and all work as one."

And folks are already looking forward to next year's event.

"Come here and they'll help you with everything,” said fifth-grade student Jania Warner.

Convoy of Hope - Wichita says they'll need more volunteers for next year's event.

Over the last five years, the group has provided over twelve thousand backpacks and sixteen thousand pairs of shoes to kids in need.