Registration now open for Project Fresh Start

For the Metro Wire

Family registration for Project Fresh Start, a United Way of Portage County Volunteer Center program that provides school supplies to qualifying students, is now open.

Registration is open through Friday, July 27, for the distribution event taking place Saturday, Aug. 18, at P.J. Jacobs Junior High School in Stevens Point. Almond Bancroft residents do not need to pre-register, but will need to contact the school’s main office beginning Aug. 20 for more information on receiving pre-packaged supplies.

Registration forms and informational materials for families can be found online at, in most school offices and at United Way of Portage County, 1100 Centerpoint Dr. in Stevens Point.

Participants are encouraged to register early, as time slots to pick up supplies are assigned according to the date registration forms are submitted.

Any K-12 student enrolled in a Portage County school and who qualifies for the federal free and reduced priced meal program is eligible to receive supplies. More than 3,000 students in Portage County will be eligible to receive supplies through Project Fresh Start. Last year Project Fresh Start served more than 1,000 students in Portage County.

“Project Fresh Start is crucial in making sure all students begin the school year ready to learn,” said Cecily Mileski, United Way of Portage County Volunteer Engagement Associate. “All community support for this program – through donations and volunteering – is essential to this effort.”

Through the summer months, area businesses, organizations and churches will host collection drives. The United Way Volunteer Center is always seeking new collection partners. More information and sign-up is available online at

New this year, people can go online at and purchase and donate items for Project Fresh Start.

Many volunteers are needed to make this event a success. Individuals and groups can sign up to volunteer at Project Fresh Start by going to

Contact the United Way of Portage County Volunteer Center at 715-341-6740 or for more information.