By SHERIDAN ROY
At the August town council meeting, councilor Chris Poulos introduced a group of charitable middle-and-high-school aged volunteers, the “Giving Back Girls,” and celebrated their most recent achievement. Earlier this month, the Giving Back Girls participated in a “Fill the Bus” event at the Southington Walmart with the ultimate goal of filling a school bus with school supplies.
The school supplies were donated by customers shopping at Walmart. The girls collected the donations and stuffed backpacks with school supplies for students in need going back to school this September.
“It gives me great pride and hope for our community that our youth feels this responsibility to give back to others,” said Poulos. “I congratulate the girls for their efforts and contributions to our community.”
The Giving Back Girls were founded in 2010 and over the last nine years have been the recipients of numerous citations and awards. The group was founded by two DePaolo Middle School girls, Erin and Emily Gibney.
Through various fundraising efforts, the Giving Back Girls have raised money for youth to attend YMCA Camp Sloper, collected thousands of pounds of food for the local food pantry, organize and volunteer at the Arc of Southington’s annual Christmas party, and more.
The annual Fill the Bus event provides 350 to 400 stuffed backpacks for youth each year.
Poulos also thanked the adults, parents and mentors who “guide the young ladies in a life of service.” The council also recognized Trish Gibney for her efforts in working with the Giving Back Girls over the years after her daughters have moved on.