REFORM, Inc., a local 501 (c)3 non profit organization, is gearing up to give school supplies away to children in Pine Bluff on from 9 a.m.- noon on Saturday, Aug. 19, at the Trinity Annex Building, 2900 West 6th Street in Pine Bluff. President and Founder Melrita Garrett-Johnson said, “We are beyond excited to be a blessing to the youth of Pine Bluff. We will have over 300 back packs and other items to give out to prepare the children to have a successful year of learning this 2017-2018 school year.”


According to Johnson, the event was made possible due to community partners and personal donations. Johnson describes this event as a community fest.


“We will have a DJ, food trucks, bounce house, door prizes and more. We want this to be a safe, family-friendly event that anyone can attend regardless if they bring children out or not, there will be something for everyone even though it is designed to give back o the kiddos,” she said.


Community partners include: The Arkansas Fair Housing Commission, EASI Ambulance Service, Jefferson Regional Medical Center, Book Town USA, Garden Pointe Assisted Living, White Hall Health and Rehabilitation, Arkansas Convalescent Center, UAPB 4-H, Colored Classrooms, Inc., Alfred Carroll Ministries, New Jerusalem MBC, Greater Ward Chapel AME Church, New Home MBC, the Mu Chi Chi Chapter of Chi Eta Phi Nursing Sorority, Ambassadors for Christ, Inc., the Delta Omega Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., the Beta Beta and Epsilon Zeta Zeta Chapters of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., the Ada Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star, and more.


Johnson said, “REFORM, Inc. has received a great response to this event and in addition was also able to give out over 1000 back to school items during a Back to School Event at the Forrest City School District compliments of the Xi Sigma Zeta Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. My sorority saw what we were preparing to do in Pine Bluff and requested we be a part of their event in Forrest City by making a nice donation. I am always eager to do, especially in my hometown of Forrest City and my new home in Pine Bluff.”


The Back to School Extravaganza wraps up the 40/40/40 Campaign in which REFORM, Inc. set out to raise $40,000 in 40 days for the Founder’s 40th birthday, which is on August 19, to fund future programming and events REFORM, Inc. is planning.


Johnson says they have not yet met the $40,000 goal but is optimistic that with the help of the community and friends, they will. She said, “It’s not too late. We still have some more days left until the 19th.”


For more information regarding REFORM, Inc. on how you can donate or volunteer, visit their website at www.reformincarkansas.org or contact Melrita Garrett-Johnson at 870-519-9482. Tax deductible donations made out to REFORM, Inc. can be mailed to P.O. Box 2077, Pine Bluff, AR, 71613 or made to PayPal.me/reformincarkansas.