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Students, families enjoy 4th annual Families In Transition Resource Fair

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The 4th annual Families in Transition (FIT) Resource Fair took place Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015, at South Lake High School's cafeteria from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Homeless students and their families received invitations to attend this event from Lake County Schools' Title I Department. Community partners, charitable organizations, Lake County Schools Title I and Student Services departments, and additional volunteers were on hand to help families enjoy several hours of free outreach services, resources and donations.
 
Free  resources provided to families at this year's fair included: 
  • Laptops set up for parents and students to learn about and navigate iStation and iReady
  • Health Department vision and hearing screenings 
  • Blood pressure, pulse, and temperature checks by Lake-Sumter State College Student Nurses
  • Reading Corner with free books and stuffed toys, featuring Read to Sydney - the reading dog
  • New winter jacket/coat and haircuts for children
  • Employment opportunities and job training information for parents
  • Lunch, drinks, and snacks for all participants
  • $10 gas cards and bags of cleaning supplies/paper products for each homeless family participating
  • Door prizes, including:  gift cards from Target, Publix, Office Depot, AMC Theaters, Rural King and Payless Shoes; meal cards from Sonic, 2 children’s bicycles with helmets, various gift baskets, a comforter set, and a handmade quilt.

Families and students received a warm welcome and exited the fair with smiles on their faces and many expressions of thanks. This year, families from 29 of our schools came to the fair, representing a 6% increase in attendance from last year. Our total participation with community partners, volunteers, and Lake County Schools' staff was 323 persons.

 
Parents had the opportunity to complete a survey during lunch to help us plan for and improve future resource fairs. All 57 adults who completed the survey were entered in a raffle to select a door prize; 41 prizes were awarded.
 
Feedback  from participants included the following:

“It was really nice seeing such happy and smiling faces at the event.  I could see that many families received valuable information and enjoyed the event thoroughly.” – Community Partner

 

“I have attended MANY events in many regions for many years.  This FIT fair event ranks as one of the BEST ever events that I have attended.” – Community Partner

 

“Everyone was so kind and helpful.  I can’t think of one person or event that was my favorite.  All of it was fantastic.” – Parent

 

“Everyone was very helpful, the most that I liked was talking to the career personnel and Salvation Army.” - Parent