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Chick-fil-A’s annual Topple the Truck fundraiser for DeSoto County Schools delivered school supplies Monday afternoon to the DCS Central Services office in Hernando. The Chick-fil-A locations in Southaven and Olive Branch collected items for schools to have access to during the year. A percentage of sales from Monday, July 30 at the locations was also donated to the Foundation for Excellence in Learning grant program. That check totaled $2,440.21. From left are Brandon Paulsen, Stuart Davidson, Darnell Alexander, Kay Fox and Kimberly Jones, all representing Chick-fil-A.

As the start of the 2018-19 school year approaches, a scramble happens each year in stores all over by moms and dads all trying to make sure their youngsters have the tools they need to learn.

That means a rush on those stores to get the pencils and erasers, pens, notebooks, binders and other supplies required during the course of the day in the classroom.

Many parents can go through the school supply list and get everything they need at their local discount retailer or office supply store.

However, some may not have that financial opportunity and for that, DeSoto County businesses have been generous in helping fill the need.  

Many companies have school supply drives and then will give to specific schools the items their students will need get ahead at the start of the school year.

But, one of the more well-known school year events to fill the supply list for all DeSoto County Schools is from the Chick-fil-A restaurants in Olive Branch and Southaven.

Called “Topple the Truck,” the two locations in DeSoto County promote donations to the program to its customers during the weeks ahead of the first day of classes.  

“We know the students are the future of our community so we want to find ways to help give back,” said Olive Branch Chick-fil-A operator Brandon Paulsen. “This is just a small way to help out and partner together as Chick-fil-A to try to help out and serve our community.”  

Stuart Davidson, the operator of the Southaven Chick-fil-A, said the “Topple the Truck” program has backed DeSoto County Schools for several years.  

“This is our 13th year of doing this,” Davidson said. “There’s never too many supplies for students today. Families are so strapped for what their children need and teachers are averaging $400 of their own money for supplies. We just want to help them in some small way.”  

This year’s collection of school supplies was delivered earlier in the week to the DCS Central Services office in Hernando. From there, through requests of school counselors, the needed pencils and notebooks are distributed to where the need resides.  

“When all of the counselors come in, we like to give them a shopping bag of supplies,” said DCS Director of Communications Katherine Nelson, with Davidson adding, “They can go shopping until it’s all gone.”  

Along with the pens and paper, Chick-fil-A also delivered a check for more than $2,440 earmarked toward the Foundation for Excellence in Education grant program, which is administered through the DeSoto County Economic Development Council. The money was a percentage of the sales made at the two locations on July 30.  

The foundation funds teacher grant requests to instructors of the DCS schools, Northpoint Christian School and Sacred Heart School, both of Southaven.  

Bob Bakken is Staff Writer for the DeSoto Times-Tribune.

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