On February 21st, an Epsilon van, stacked to the brim with school supplies and classroom tools, parked at Erwin Middle School and employees of Epsilon, along with teachers and students, unloaded the van.

The excitement was palpable! There were supplies that most teachers can only dream of having in their classrooms. Supplies that teachers would typically have to pay for out of their own pocket. It’s fair to say that teachers were thrilled! A few teachers were even jumping for joy with excitement.

“Coming from one of the districts experiencing the highest levels of poverty and one of the states with the lowest teachers salaries, Erwin Middle School teachers often spend personal money from their pocket to buy supplies for their classrooms and for students in need. Having the support of a partner like Epsilon, Inc. makes a world of difference in our community,” said Linnea Burgevin, United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County resource coordinator for Erwin Middle School. “Our teachers are thrilled, our students are grateful, and we feel cared for and supported in a huge way.”

“We were so honored to have the students and teachers cheering for us when the Epsilon van pulled up to the school to deliver the supplies. Our employees, both local and remote, responded to this school supply drive in record numbers and amounts, whether they lived local to Asheville or not,” Sara Levine PHR, Director of Human Resources for Epsilon Inc. “The impact of our efforts really sunk in when the science teacher started jumping and screaming after she realized we were able to purchase all the safety goggles she asked for.”

Over the past few weeks, Epsilon Inc. employees raised $1,318, which allowed them to purchase these supplies. But this is not this team’s first time working with United Way to give back. Epsilon  has been committed to working at Erwin Middle School for the past year and a half, participating in a day of service, where they worked to beautify the grounds of Erwin Middle.

This article was originally published on the website of United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County and republished with permission. Learn more about United Way’s services here.