Supplying hope across the Upper Peninsula

Local News

MARQUETTE, MI (WJMN) — Hundreds of backpacks full of school supplies are being given away for free to students throughout the U.P. on Saturday, August 3.

TEAM Wireless has partnered with Ferocity Packs out of Escanaba collecting donations and school supplies at 17 locations across the Upper Peninsula, Wisconsin, and Illinois.

The idea started with a conversation between Justin Burford of TEAM Wireless and Dan Zellar of Ferocity Packs.

Burford tells WJMN, “Dan contacted me last year and introduced himself and his business Ferocity Packs. When TEAM Wireless decided a backpack giveaway for school aged kids was a great way to help the youth of our community, we decided to reconnect with Dan and see what was possible with Ferocity Packs. Working with Dan and Ferocity Packs allowed us to keep this project local to our community in all aspects including supplier. Dan has been very accommodating and was able to custom create a standard backpack with supplies for our program while maximizing our dollars invested which is allowing us to provide more backpacks to more kids.”

The backpacks include everything from crayons and sharpeners to pencils and pens. You’ll also find a notebook, ruler, glue stick and other supplies.

You can pick them up at one of seventeen of the following TEAM Wireless locations: Champaign, Paris, Robinson, Urbana, Cheboygan, Escanaba, Houghton, Iron Mountain, Kalkaska, Manistique, Marquette, Antigo, Arbor Vitae, Eau Claire, Ladysmith, Merrill, and Seven Points. Pickup start at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday.

James Burford tells WJMN, “A donation of $8 provides a backpack and supplies that would normally cost a child around $40. This means around $28,000 worth of school supplies are being provided across our 17 designated pickup locations in August.”

Dan Zellar with Ferocity Packs talked to WJMN about his passion for providing students with the supplies they need to succeed. “

Zellar said, “Ferocity Packs to me, the mission behind it is, we all remember the kid in school who asked to borrow a pencil. I don’t think that kid needs to exist. I think we’ve come far enough along in the U.P. and in the country, that kids should have that tool for success.”

If you want to help, monetary donations are being collected at all 52 locations through the month of August. TEAM Wireless is triple matching all donations.

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