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The Purple Clarion

Those in need receive ‘Suds and Smiles’

Kylan Jerrell
A poster board is set outside the central office to collect donations for the Egyptian Health Department project: Suds and Smiles.

Due to students’ and local citizens’ need for hygiene and cleaning products, the Egyptian Health Department (EHD) created the Suds and Smiles project. 

The Suds and Smiles project is led by Family Resource Program Manager Tonya Hardy from EHD. Hardy, with the help of Saline County Family Resource Developers (FRDs), helps schools in Saline County organize events and projects that help those in need. 

“I am the direct supervisor over all the Family Resource Developers in our local school,” Hardy said. “I pass along referrals, coordinate events, assist the FRDs with any needs that pop up for families and/or school-age children.”

National Do Something Nice Day is a good opportunity to utilize October as a month for charity and giving. 

“National Do Something Nice Day is Oct. 5 every year,” Hardy said. “It’s to remind people to do something nice for others and strangers. We [at EHD] adopt this idea for the entire month to do something nice throughout the entire year.”

The Suds and Smiles project helps those in need get supplies that they normally can’t get for themselves. 

“There was a need present within our school-age children and their families to receive hygiene products. They are one of the most requested items along with clothing and food,” Hardy said. “[EHD] accepts many items that directly benefit our local communities.”

FRD Teri Pate helps students at HHS get the supplies they need.

“I link families for sources, and I can transport those services to the doctor, help them sign up for Medicaid, take them to food pantries, help with supplies, mental health, and all kinds of things,” Pate said.  

Pate also helps surrounding districts in the county get the supplies for students. 

“I’ll keep some here, and give some to other schools in the district. We’ll take some to the Support Deck, which is the transition center at EHD,  and take some to clients who are community members here in Saline County,” Pate said. “If people need cleaning supplies when they’re sick, need hygiene products like shampoo and soap, we’ll provide that for them.”

Since Dollar Generals don’t allow charities to set up out front, EHD has contacted Walmart for a support day. 

“Some places only have Dollar Generals and won’t allow people to set up outside of them. It’s a corporate thing,” Pate said. “We typically do the Suds and Smiles project at Walmart on Oct. 28 from 10 (a.m)-2(p.m.).”

EHD’s Director of Quality Improvement, Elizabeth Cook, understands the importance of projects like Suds and Smiles. 

”It’s easy to take things like deodorant, body wash, or even period products for granted when you have never had to make the choice between those items or other necessities,” Cook said. “Every item donated can help remove a little bit of stress for your peers and their families.”


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Kylan Jerrell, Staff Writer
Kylan Jerrell is a senior at Harrisburg High School. This is his first year working as an Purple Clarion staff member. He participates in the school band, playing the trombone for the concert, jazz, and marching band. He is also an active member in Key Club, History Club, Music Club and Book Club. He is passionate about literature, writing, and music.  Kylan spends his free time reading, writing short stories and poetry, practicing his instrument and listening to a wide variety of music. He plans on attending school to study both music and literature.  “Student journalism gives a voice to students, both as writers and participants in school activities. It is an essential part of the ‘High School Experience’.”

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