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Operation Safe Return visits TMISD school

Group donates backpacks and school supplies for elementary students
Posted at 2:55 PM, Aug 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-01 16:46:59-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — There were a lot of smiling faces at Tuloso-Midway Primary School Monday morning.

Representatives with Operation Safe Return paid the elementary school a visit and they came bearing gifts.

The group donated hundreds of backpacks full of back-to-school supplies.

Operation Safe Return is a partnership between police, local businesses, and members of the community.

Its mission is to make sure all students have the necessary supplies to succeed in school.

"This is an opportunity for those kids not to be left behind and they're so appreciative of everything they get," Tuloso-Midway ISD Superintendent Steve VanMatre said. You give a kid a new bike, a new pair of shoes, and school supplies and you'll put a smile on their face."

VanMatre said the donations the students received also build up their self-esteem.

"When they go into those classrooms they're not going to feel left out because they're going to have everything they need," he said.

Suzette Quintanilla, President, and CEO of the Selena Foundation was also at Monday's event.

The foundation presented Operation Safe Return with a $10,000 donation.

"We are definitely in a time where children need to feel empowerment in some way, shape, or form and what better way to be able to give them school supplies so when they come into school, they feel confident and ready to go," said Quintanilla.

This is the second year in a row that the Selena Foundation has donated $10,000 to Operation Safe Return.