Albany Viper Unit holds Back-to-School Event

Back-to-School bash. / Jessica Fairley

Dougherty County students will be heading back to school Monday and Albany Viper Unit has set out to help parents complete their child's school supply needs.

At the back-to-school event, they had sack races, jumping gyms, music and food. Families also had the chance to complete their school shopping list. The Albany Viper Unit says the event's been a long time in the making.

"We raised the funds through car washes, fund raisers, raffle ticket sales things of that nature," said Viper Unit Presidents Marvin Thomas.

He says he knows how expensive school shopping can get. After purchasing new clothes, shoes and book bags, picking up pencils and paper can seem like a financial feat. He says the organization is reaching out to help lessen the load.

"It's a last opportunity to give parents an opportunity to come out and get those last minute items that they haven't picked up or didn't have the money to get," said Marvin Thomas.

Albany officials say not only do students need tools for school but they also need encouragement. They say they came out to the bash to spread that message.

"The parents need to stick with their children. They need to help them in every way they can. They need to encourage them to do their homework. They need to teach them to mind their parents and teachers," said Albany Commissioner Dorothy Hubbard.

The mayoral candidate says kids should be instilled with the notion that they can be their own leader. She says this will make them more successful as citizens. While at the event, Hubbard also delivered a proclamation from the mayor deeming July 31st as Albany Viper Unit day.

"These young men and women who are members of the Albany Viper Club have done everything they can to help our community," said Hubbard.

The group accepted their praise while making it clear that the event wasn't about them, but about giving back.