Back to School Orange nears; check out details and how to get involved

Published 12:20 am Friday, July 14, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Back to School Orange, a 501C3 working under the auspices of Orange Christian services, hosts an annual school supply drive  benefiting students enrolled in Orange County and Deweyville ISD’s.

This year, the 12th supply giveaway is planned from 9 a.m. to noon Aug. 5 at the Lamar State College Orange Student Center.

Although event day registration is available, Back to School County board member Samantha Ziller encourages all families to visit Orange Christian Services to pre-register for one of the 800 school supply filled backpacks that will be given out on Aug. 5.

“We have 800 bags of school supplies,” she said. “They’re on a first-come, first-served basis. All children that pre-register are guaranteed to receive the supplies on the day of the event. In addition, all kids that pre preregistered will be given priority in the line the day of the event.”

Families interested in pre-registration are invited to bring proof of the student’s enrollment in an Orange County or Deweyville ISD campus to Orange Christian Services  at 2518 W. Park Avenue July 17–20 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

An additional opportunity to pre-register will occur July 22 at the Lamar State College Orange Student Center from 8 to 11 a.m.

Call 409-886-0938 or email for more information.

Children do not need to be present to pre-register but must be present to receive a backpack  Aug. 5.

Organizers hope to improve service delivery each year to ensure event day is seamless for all.

Kelly Meadows, director of health services for Little Cypress Mauriceville ISD and Back to School Orange County board member, said improvements have been made to better serve families with special needs children.

“We had families who waited in line, and it was very difficult for them, so we try to work with families,” she said. “Some of our special friends stay in a room while the volunteers walk through and visit vendors on their behalf, or a volunteer will walk with the family. Sometimes others don’t see hidden illnesses. We’re trying to take care of the needs of everyone.”

Families with children served by special services are encouraged to take advantage of pre-registration, when organizers will note appropriate accommodations that can be made.

Inside the LSCO Student Center, students will receive  three months of supplies that are grade level specific and based on the most requested items from Orange County and Deweyville campuses.

Students  receive additional items from vendors representing churches, financial institutions and charitable organizations.

Outside the Student Center families may stop by the Rolling Video Games of Southeast Texas gaming trailer, visit first responders or enjoy ice cream from the Orange Lions Club, and hot dogs from other vendors.

Back to School Orange operates at cost, making fundraisers essential to service delivery. The last summer BBQ fundraiser Link Sale is today (July 14) from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Team Granger Super Center  at 400 N. 16th street in Orange.

Orders are $7 each and include 1 link, a bag of potato chips and a drink.

Back to School Orange  represents the combined efforts of local churches working together under one identity. The mission statement is Christians Coming Together to Bless the Children of Orange County.

Board president and Administrative Pastor of Victory Life Church Steven Burks said many churches in the area were doing different things.

“We felt like God was calling us to pool our resources together to form one identity under one umbrella,” Burks said.

Prospective volunteers, donors and vendors can reach out to Back to School Orange County through or via @backtoschoolorange on Facebook. BBQ fundraiser orders and/or delivery orders should be emailed to

— Written by Shari D. Hardin