Sending kids back to school is expensive, especially for parents who have more than one school-aged child.
The Nebraska City Ministerial Association had that in mind when it organized a school supply drive, collecting more than $300 worth of school supplies in about a month.
The supplies, which include notebooks and paper, pens and pencils, crayons and markers and various other types of supplies, were delivered to the school district's central office on Friday.
"I remember when I went to school, there was never a charge for [anything]," said Rev. Jerry Albright, Pastor at First Christian Church in Nebraska City and President of the Ministerial Association. "School districts just can't do that anymore with the way the tax structure is –  they just can't afford it.
"Now the burden falls on the families. There's no program to help out with school supplies. It can be a real burden, especially when you have several children in grade school and high school."
Deacon Dorothy Royal of St. Mary's Episcopal Church, who spearheaded the drive, said it costs approximately $60 per child on average for the requires supplies.
Royal said St. Mary’s Episcopal has done a similar drive in the past, but nothing this big.
The churches that participated included St. Mary's Episcopal, Bethel United Church of Christ, First Presbyterian, First Christian, First Evangelical Lutheran, St. Mary's Catholic, First United Methodist, and Community of Christ.
"Dorothy organized it," Albright said. "She went to all the schools, got a list of supplies for each grade, put it together on a [list] and printed them up for each of our church bulletins."
Royal said she hopes to do this every year.
“I think probably next year we should start about a month sooner, and maybe publicize it a little bit more," she said.
Albright agreed.
“I think it was an excellent effort, and I think we collected quite a bit,” he said. “When you put all the churches together and we have all of those resources, it makes more of an impact when just one or two churches try to do it on their own.”