Grace Temple helps kids get ready for school

One church community is reaching out to help children with their back-to-school needs. Hattiesburg's Grace Temple hosted an annual back-to-school day for kids from the Hope Drive and Greenbriar Apartments areas.

As part of the event, dozens of free backpacks filled with school supplies were given away. Face-painting and other activities were also provided for the youngsters.

Church members also sponsor an after-school program for these children two afternoons a week.

"It's a lot more than just buying backpacks and saying have a great year," said Heather Adams, director for the church's after school program.

"We truly want to make a difference in the lives of people on Hope Drive and you do that by working with the kids.  If you reach the kids and help the kids, you're helping the community as well," Adams said.

About 150 backpacks were given to the children.