The New Jersey Electronic Security Association (NJESA) and Mission 500 recently teamed up during the NJESA Annual Symposium, held March 6-8 at Harrah’s Atlantic City for a School Backpack Building Event.

Participants gathered and worked in unity to assemble the backpacks and write personal notes of encouragement and hope. Each backpack also included a binder, crayons, eraser, paper folders, a glue stick, markers, a notebook, pens, pencils, a ruler and a sharpener.

The 200 school backpacks were then distributed personally to Principal LaQuetta Small and the children at the Pennsylvania Avenue School in Atlantic City. The children were given the backpacks based on perfect attendance.

The event was headed up by Ken Gould, president-elect of the NJESA and advisory board member of Mission 500, and Linda Nolan, a Mission 500 volunteer.  In addition, Peter Raymond of New Jersey based P.F. Raymond, Inc. took an active role in finding the right school.

“It was a no brainer of where to deliver the backpacks,” said Raymond. “The school is located in Atlantic City, where our symposium was held, and the children are definitely in need.”

The backpacks were awarded to students based on attendance record for grades 7 and 8, to promote the importance of attending class and school.

“The School Backpack Building Event was a meaningful and high-impact experience that inspired and engaged the members of the NJESA,” said Gould. “The best part is that we were able to meet a very tangible need.”