LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — The University of Lynchburg and Johnson Health Center helped families prepare for students’ return to the classroom by holding back-to-school events on Saturday.

For many families, the start of a new school year puts a strain on their wallets. With inflation rising and high prices on countless products, including school supplies, such events can make a huge difference.

“I think if you look at the cost of things now, especially with inflation, it’s tougher for parents to get the kind of supplies that kids need to go to school, so I think this year more than ever, this is really impacting a lot of people in our community,” said Gary Campbell, the CEO of Johnson Health.

Johnson Health held its eighth annual Back to School Fair on Saturday, Aug. 6, where it donated 750 backpacks filled with school supplies, such as notebooks, pencils, pens, and a surprise gift from each of its sponsors.

“We’re just happy to do this. As Sherry said, it’s something we’ve enjoyed doing for a long time,” Campbell said.

Over at the University of Lynchburg, organizations teamed up to donate more 1,200 pairs of tennis shoes and approximately 2,000 backpacks to students.

The executive director of One Community One Voice, James Camm, says it couldn’t have happened without their community partners.

“We really want to thank Lynchburg because all that we get is from partnership and individual giving, so we’re able to give the tennis shoes and the backpacks and the t-shirts to these kids,” said Camm.

Both events featured music, vendors, food, and plenty of fun for families, allowing them to get outside and soak up the last few moments of summer.

“It was a good time because it gives the kids that last weekend before going back to school also,” Camm said.