AKRON, Ohio, Oct. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — To help kick start a successful school year, FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE) is donating school supplies to nearly 11,400 Akron Public School students in kindergarten through sixth grades. Backpacks pre-packed with school supply items will be available to all students who attend the district’s 41 elementary schools during a drive-through event at North and Kenmore-Garfield High schools on Sunday, October 4, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Assembled by FirstEnergy volunteers, the cinch-style backpacks contain items approved by the school district to help students successfully continue their school year from home. The supplies, several of which were purchased from diverse suppliers to support minority-owned businesses, include notebook paper, folders, glue, pencils, sharpener, hand sanitizer and a dry erase board, marker and eraser.

FirstEnergy’s donation fills a gap created when the coronavirus health emergency caused the cancellation of the area’s annual “Stuff the Bus” program presented by the United Way of Summit and Medina. Working with Akron Public Schools, FirstEnergy employees gathered and packaged the items and arranged for a safe, limited-contact distribution.

“I’m proud of our FirstEnergy employees who identified a need to support our youth during a time that has brought unprecedented challenges to many families in our area,” said Lorna Wisham, vice president, Corporate Affairs and Community Involvement. “We hope this makes things just a bit easier for Akron families as their children continue the school year.”

More than 5,000 cars are expected to pass through the pick-up points at North and Kenmore-Garfield High Schools on Sunday, and the METRO bus service will provide free travel to and from the event between the hours of noon and 5 p.m. for those families without vehicles. In addition, Akron Public Schools have arranged to provide backpacks to students who are without permanent homes.

“From our corporate partners and volunteers to the local businesses and public transit system supporting this event, it’s heartwarming to see the community come together to ensure our students receive the tools they need for a quality learning experience,” said David James, superintendent of Akron Public Schools. “This school year may not look like the typical year yet, but we’re committed to making the virtual learning environment as educational and rewarding as any other.”             

FirstEnergy is dedicated to safety, reliability and operational excellence. Its ten electric distribution companies form one of the nation’s largest investor-owned electric systems, serving customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia, Maryland and New York. The company’s transmission subsidiaries operate approximately 24,500 miles of transmission lines that connect the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions.  Follow FirstEnergy online at www.firstenergycorp.com. Follow FirstEnergy and its utilities on Twitter @FirstEnergyCorp, @ToledoEdison, @IlluminatingCo, @OhioEdison, @MonPowerWV, @JCP_L, @Penn_Power, @Penelec, @Met_Ed, @PotomacEdison, @W_Penn_Power.

SOURCE FirstEnergy Corp.

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