119 businesses help 90 families go back to school

ALABASTER – Businesses along Alabama 119 in Alabaster teamed up to help families and students in need during the first 119 Gives Back to School event on Sunday, Aug. 6. According to Pit Stop Barbershop owner and event organizer Gray Keith, the event helped about 90 kids and their families.

For the 119 Gives Back to School, local businesses donated food, school supplies and gift cards, which were collected and distributed at the Pit Stop and Salon 119, which also provided free haircuts. Boohaker Family and Cosmetic Dentistry provided free teeth cleanings and Marc 1 Car Wash cleaned family cars for free.

Keith said that he decided to organize 119 Gives Back for the first time after he achieved several personal successes and wanted to see the same happen for someone else.

“I’ve had so many good things happen this year,” Keith said. “You don’t know, if somebody had a little extra help, what they could do. Just being kind to the next person goes a long way. People these days get into self so much that they sometimes forget to help the next person. It’s so easy to do.”

Keith said that the feedback he received from families was overwhelmingly positive.

“Everybody was in disbelief that we were doing this, and they were so grateful,” Keith said. “I had one family in particular that thought this was so great. They lad literally spent their last paycheck to pay for school expenses.”

In the future, Keith said he hopes to expand the event to include more businesses and provide for more businesses.

“We could have taken on more,” Keith said. “Hopefully, we’ll do it next year and it will be bigger.”

Keith said he appreciates that so many businesses came forward for a good cause.

“I’m thankful for all of the businesses that took the time out of their schedules to help me orchestrate this,” Keith said.

The following businesses also participated in 119 Gives Back to School: The Garage Kickboxing, Canine Custodial Engineers, A to Z Auto Repair, the Meadow View Elementary School PTO, the Angel Warrior Foundation, Dirt Sculpting LLC, Todd Pearson Realtor with Keller Williams, Alabama Rep. April Weaver, Alabama Sen. Cam Ward, Hungry Howie’s and Cuts N Such.