Cru Inner City is helping 25,000 students head back to school this season with all the supplies they need. According to the Kids in Need Foundation, more than 16 million kids live in “extreme poverty in the U.S. and arrive on the first day of school without the supplies they need to learn.” In Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota, Cru Inner City is working to help the nearly 100,000 kids in the area who are living in poverty.
Cru Inner City is a Christian organization that partners with inner-city churches across the U.S., and this year in Minneapolis and St. Paul, they partnered with 80 churches to help distribute backpacks filled with school supplies, which they call Power Packs.
The powerpack initiative is setting kids in these two cities up to have successful school years and are also connecting families with churches.
According to The Christian Post, Cru Inner City has packed and distributed thousands of Power Packs to some of the most impoverished areas in the U.S.
In a video posted to Pureflix.com, one of the initiatives sponsors this year, Aaron Robertson of Cru Inner City explained that "The scope of poverty in the inner city is complex and overwhelming," and the organization hopes to show "God's heart for the poor."
The organization also hopes that Power Packs can work to not only provide kids with the resources they need to be successful but to also bring churches and families together to create positive and lasting relationships.
One of the pastors involved in the program, Bishop Harding Smith of Spiritual Church of God, said in the video documenting Cru Inner City’s work this year, " We are so thankful and grateful to God for Inner City Cru to be able to help our organization.” Smith continued with a smile on his face, "We have seen God working where the parents now — they're not just bringing the kids to come and receive these school supplies — but they're also bringing them to worship, getting them to know God."
Another pastor involved, Pastor Paul Bushey of Second Chance Ministries, said that he has seen some families who were once on the receiving end of the Power Packs come back later and help package them for other families in need.
Bushey said, "The community ... there's a lot of hardship ... the parents are trying, but they just don't have the means." Bushey continued with tears in his eyes, "And when you can reach out with a Power Pack and say, 'Here' — and you watch their kids' eyes. It touches your heart."
Photo courtesy: Unsplash/Mitchell Griest