Hattiesburg company gives away free rugs to teachers for classrooms

Published: Jun. 25, 2021 at 4:19 PM CDT
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PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - Early Friday morning, teachers from across the Pine Belt lined up outside of Anderson Design Center in Hattiesburg as the company held it’s annual rug giveaway.

The event allows teachers to pick out a rug for their classroom free of charge. Rachel Williams, Mary Miller and Sue Ellen Lutsch are teachers at Central Elementary in George County who attended.

“I’m very impressed by how many rugs they have,” Miller said.

“Oh yeah the selection is great,” Lutsch added.

“The selection is wonderful and it’s just a great way to give back to the community,” Miller continued. “Teachers spend so much of their own personal money on things in their classroom and it’s just one thing we don’t have to buy.”

The giveaway started 15 years ago when the owner Mr. Anderson would offer free rugs to teachers he knew in need of supplies.

“So he couldn’t stand the thought of children sitting on cold hard floors and when teachers asked for a rug, we would get a bound carpet or if we had extra rugs leftover and they could use it for their classroom just for that purpose,” said Jennifer Davion, the marketing director for Anderson Design Center.

Now the annual giveaway attracts hundreds of teachers.

“I teach kindergarten, so it’ll be a great spot for my reading, my library center, you know a nice cushiony carpet compared to a hard floor,” Miller said.

“I teach math this year, but we’ll definitely get up out of our desks get down on the floor and work on some manipulatives and that kind of thing and make it exciting, make it fun,” Lutsch said.

At the event, employees help teachers pick out their perfect rug, hoping to add some warmth and comfort to classrooms across the Pine Belt.

Davion said she enjoys working the event.

“It’s really heartwarming to see the teachers call us back or send a card and have the little children sign their names and send a picture with a thank you,” Davion said. “Not that we expect that at all, but it’s just something to know that we’ve helped our community. He truly believes in the work that teachers do here to raise up the future generations.”

Teachers can also post a picture of their new rug to social media and tag the Anderson Design Center for a chance to win a $200 dollar Office Depot gift card.

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