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“Jungle Jama” gives away backpacks

Some children in the Troup County School System will soon receive free backpacks thanks to a generous donation of over 60 of them delivered by realtor Tammy Soulakos, who works for Keller Williams Realty in Coweta County. TCSS parent and family engagement coordinator Nicole Kennedy (also known as “Jungle Jama” from The Jungle Bus) will provide the backpacks to students and families in need.

“We will distribute some of them here from [our] central office when students register that are in at-risk groups, like foster care students or McKinney-Vento students,” Kennedy said.

The TCSS central office is at 100 North Davis Road.

She also said some of the backpacks would be shared with schools.

“I’ll divvy up the others and send them to our school counselors at the elementary level. I believe most of these backpacks are smaller in size. I don’t know that binders would fit in there for our middle and high school students.”

According to Soulakos, Keller Williams Realty Atlanta Partners has a partnership with a charity called Kares 4 Kids. She is an ambassador for the Kares 4 Kids committee at her Keller Williams office.

“We serve children in our market area,” she said. “We have mostly been focused on Coweta County because that’s where the majority of our market share was we didn’t really know anybody in surrounding counties. And as our office has grown, so has our market share, so we’re now down into Pike, Meriwether, Troup, Carroll counties.”

She explained that a woman at her office named Carla Rushing, who is from LaGrange, put Soulakos in touch with Kennedy.

“[Kennedy’s] a wonderful contact. … She sent me a list of all the schools that could use assistance and kind of a guidance as far as how many backpacks per school. We did 171 backpacks total this year, and we gave them to different organizations, and so [TCSS] was one of them.”

According to Soulakos, the woman who started Kares 4 Kids, Marci Fair, works at a Keller Williams market center in Duluth.

“Everything we give goes back to the kids. The office there takes care of ordering, in bulk, all of the supplies,” she said.