The Greater Bethesda Chamber of Commerce NextExecs are participating in an initiative that is part of the Chamber’s mission to support, inspire, and advocate for business to better our community. A drive to furnish needy Montgomery County Public School students with backpacks, complete with critical school supplies, the GIVE BACKpacks campaign raises funds to purchase backpacks for students who qualify for Free and Reduced-Price Meals (FARMS). Each new backpack comes with supplies appropriate for K-12 school students, including pencils, pens, dividers, and notebooks.
The Chamber is supported by some wonderful businesses and organizations to make this happen, including Marriott International, Metro Bethesda Rotary Club, Behnam & Associates, Barre 3 Bethesda, First National Bank, and The Bethesdan Hotel. According to Allie Williams, Chamber President and CEO, “We are proud of the work we do in the community, and we love seeing the next generation of executives help the future generations through these efforts.”
Greater Bethesda Chamber NextExecs are made up of “young professionals in the greater Bethesda community interested in engaging in business networking, professional development, and community service in order to position themselves for optimal career growth.” Under the leadership of Carla Young, Director of Membership and Community Engagement, is so excited about the energy and enthusiasm behind the effort. “One of our members, Anna Benham, has personally assembled over two hundred backpacks for students!”
Anna, through her non-profit, Yellow Boomerang, has enlisted the support of her community to donate supplies and fundraise. We asked Anna about why she is involved, and she said, “Back to school is an important time and there are many Montgomery County families in need. I am glad that we can come together as a community and support our neighbors.” Another active NextExec is Sean Makulowich of IdeaFire™ who is also a member of the Chamber Board of Directors. He notes that “we are an active group doing good in the community, and this is a perfect initiative for us to work on.”
While NextExecs are doing the hands-on work of preparing the backpacks for students, Chamber members, as well as the rest of the community, are encouraged to participate by donating a minimum of $10 to the drive. Every donation will go to help supply another student with a loaded backpack. The easiest ways for people to donate financially are through The Chamber’s Venmo @TGBCC account or a check made to the “Greater Bethesda Chamber of Commerce” with the memo line Backpack drive.
With the monies raised, NextExecs will purchase the items from a local Chamber member to fill the backpacks and deliver them to the participating schools - ideally by mid-August leading up to the first day of school on August 29th.
Please support this important cause by donating today.
The NextExecs are sponsored by McKay Mortgage. The Leadership includes, Andrew Borkoski, M&T Bank, Lili Sargsyan, Cohn Snyder and Aaron Slaughter of Withum CPA.
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