Local Arvest Bank employees wrapped up their annual Million Meals Campaign with a big check presentation and some food for the Carthage R-9 Bright Futures Snack Pack Program.

Local Arvest Bank employees wrapped up their annual Million Meals Campaign with a big check presentation and some food for the Carthage R-9 Bright Futures Program.
Michelle Kralicek, with Arvest Bank, said the campaign across all Arvest banks actually collected food and raised money for about two million meals to benefit needy children and families across the region.
In Carthage, Kralicek and other Arvest employees presented Kim Hoover, coordinator of the Carthage Bright Futures program with boxes of food and a check for $1,650.27.
Hoover said the money and food will go right back out to children in need in Carthage.
“We do our weekend food packs for kids in the district during the school years and during summer school,” Hoover said. “And this last school year we were sending home over 300 food packs weekly with kids who needed a little extra support at home to make it through the weekend. This money will go straight to that as well as the food donations that were brought in. We will definitely use it and are very appreciative.”
Kralicek said the bank got help from the community for the local campaign.
“The Carthage Nazarene Church brought in over 700 items, the Carthage Junior High brought in over 300 items and then this is the second year our Carthage Intermediate Center did their annual dunk tank fundraiser,” Kralicek said. “They did coins for kids, which brought in over $600. Carthage together as a community brought in over 8,000 meals which is up from last year's total of 6,000 meals.”
Hoover said Bright Futures is continuing to provide an extra meal families and children who might be what's called food insecure through July 24 at Columbian School.
Every day from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., children and their parents can come to Columbian, located at 1015 W. Macon St., for the Summer Break Spot, a place for friends, food, fun, reading and prizes.
Children can get a meal for free, and parents can eat too for a minimal cost.
And as a sign that Summer is fast winding to a close, Hoover said Bright Futures is preparing for its annual Stuff the Bus Campaign, which allows people to buy school supplies and donate them to Bright Futures on a bright yellow school bus that will be parked at Walmart.
The event will be Friday, July 27, from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. And Saturday, July 28, from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Hoover said Bright Futures will distribute the school supplies to Carthage area students in need.
People can email Hoover at hooverk@carthagetigers.org if they are interested in helping or check out the wish list for needed items on Amazon.com or on the registry at Walmart.com.
For more details, people can call Carthage Bright Futures at 417-758-0899