Tullahoma Chick-fil-A Owner/Operator Joseph Seabolt and Executive Marketing Director Kelleye Watts came to Ashley Abraham, Executive Director of United Way of Highway 55, and Pam Bussell-First Christian Church, The Salvation Army, and Second Harvest Food Bank Representative to discuss a generous donation that they wanted to carefully distribute to an area of need in our community. The four collaborated and decided that with this upcoming school year and the unique challenges that faculty and students will face – they should address the increased supply needs. Ashley Abraham stated, “We have a Covid-19 Fund in place to help with utility/rent assistance and I know of other churches and organizations doing the same. In addition, there are currently many local food pantries doing great work. With that in mind, we thought we could make the biggest impact helping our schools/teachers with this upcoming unique school year.” Pam Bussell explained, “Teachers spend so much money out of pocket each year, and this year with the pandemic, extra cleaning and sanitizing will be required. Joseph and Kelleye agreed the additional resources would assist the schools in their battle to combat the virus and keep children and faculty safe. We cannot thank them enough for making this possible.”
Chick-fil-A graciously donated $5,000, and the United Way of Highway 55 assisted by donating an additional $2,000 to provide $1,000 in supplies for each of the 7 Tullahoma Schools. They took the idea for their $7,000 contribution to Shannon Duncan, Director of Student Services at Tullahoma City Schools and who then reached out to all 7 schools to collect their most needed supply items. Between the Tullahoma Wal-Mart, Ollies, and Sellers Surplus they were able to fill all supply requests. Abraham stated, “When Pam and I communicated our idea to Walmart, Ollies, and Sellers Surplus they jumped on board and helped fill everything! Caleb and Brittany Sellers, Owners of Sellers Surplus in Downtown Tullahoma, consistently helps our community. They gathered the requested supplies they had and donated some off-list items too. Ollies also donated a couple boxes of sanitizer and helped fill our large sanitizer/bottled alcohol order. The Tullahoma Wal-Mart Manager, Mark Kelly, helped fill the rest of the large order including over 200 pairs of headphones. It takes a village and I am so proud of the things our community is able to accomplish when we come together!” Chick-fil-A also provided volunteers to help organize, load, and deliver the supplies to the schools. Their team members were also excited to be a part of the process. As school approaches, this generous supply donation will help our students, faculty and teachers combat the increased supply needs. “The pandemic has increased supply needs far beyond normal, and it has become more difficult to find certain items. Thank you to the many businesses, organizations and individuals that made this possible! Our thoughts and prayers go out to the staff and faculty in the hopes we have a great, safe school year.”
In the photo above: Reps from United Way of Hwy 55, Tullahoma Schools, students, Tullahoma Chamber. First Christian Church, The Salvation Army, Second Harvest Food Bank and Chick-fil-A.