Supporting Education During a Pandemic in Jacksonville

Drive UP Back to School Jamboree
Drive UP Back to School Jamboree


Supporting Education During a Pandemic in Jacksonville
William Jackson, M.Ed.

The pandemic has proven that it does take a village
to raise and educate a community. All children
deserve equal access to resources that promote and
encourage education and success.

Businesses, entrepreneurs, mom and dad preneurs,
businesses small, medium and large can help educate
youth, teens and young adults in the school system
across this city by providing resources to help students
learn online and offline.

Businesses are worrying about how their Brands look,
how their Branding is perceived and how their Marketing
strategies can be applied to the public during the pandemic.
Businesses are forgetting that the best ways to support and
provide security and build for the future is through education.
The equal education of all children no matter their zip code
or geographic location within Jacksonville, Florida.

The pandemic has shown that businesses small, medium
and large and even corporations within our city should take
responsibility to help education as a humanitarian effort to
bring positive change and build towards the future.
To provide the necessary resources so students can learn
and grow. Businesses should care how education is provided,
adapted, modified and transformed because the students
of today are the employees and customers of tomorrow.
If students in school today cannot find jobs in the future they
will not be the consumers this or any other city will need to
buy products and services.

Too many businesses are only looking at the here and now,
not the future that will either bring people that can buy their
products or people that will not be able to afford their products
because they do not have the necessary education to apply
for well-paying jobs that allow them to buy cars, shop for food
and other human necessities, to pay for utilities and pay taxes
that are required to run a city.

Families are struggling now because of the pandemic what of
those not able to receive an education to prepare them for
the future as consumers?
Florida Blue is a great role model in supporting education and
more businesses should follow their lead. Businesses that do
not invest in education on any scale creates the impression
that theirs is not a humanitarian relationship nor are children
a priority. Businesses that do not support education shows
that education is not valuable and worth investing in.
Remaining on the sidelines of only caring for profits, the
will of those sitting on boards and the bottom line of

The mindset must change because nations globally will
have to recover financially and the way create a solid
growth is to educate youth, teens and young adults. It is
beyond politics and political association and affiliation.
What better way to bring visibility to a business no matter
what size to support education in multiple ways. There is a
need for collaboration,  cooperation and transformation that
can support equal learning, equitability to resources and
opportunities to prepare each generation to be prepared to
take the lead in solving problems that may arise.
There are thousands of students across grade levels that
are without laptops, desktops and other devices to gain an

Community support efforts like “Drive Up Back to School
Jamboree” provides needed resources and is a great model
for helping thousands of students and their parents.
Providing school resources and food, this “village concept”
or holistic approach feeds the mind, body and inspires the
soul with hope.

The pandemic, racial unrest, police killings, global climate
changes and other social instabilities are creating mental
challenges that affect the mind, body and soul.

Community partnerships, collaborations and joint ventures
do matter if the effort, will and passion are right with student
success and growth beyond just testing students.
Student’s hearts and minds must be provided for  the
betterment of neighborhoods, communities and all of

As a teacher of 33 years, now more than ever Jacksonville
must come closer together to help families, communities, and
neighborhoods to grow beyond the current challenges and
prepare for a better future after the pandemic.

Great appreciation to Geraldine Ford of ALPGA Starz, Inc.
for her efforts to bring blessings to the students attending
Duval County Public Schools with the “Drive-Up” Back 2 School
Jamboree. Thanks to the youth, teens and young adults and
their parents for volunteering that weekend to help in sharing
food and schools supplies.

Taken from Geraldine Ford Facebook page with appreciation to
all that helped, edited for space…

“I personally would like to thank everyone who donated, supported
ALPHA Starz, Inc. Annual Back 2 School “Drive-Up” Jamboree.
My heart is overflowing. I am calling out everyone who made this
event possible. First I would like to thank God for allowing me
to have so many precious friends and family who always help.
Special thank you to my daughter Toni for believing in her mom.
My granddaughter Taylor aka Astronaut Starbright who reached
out to her Facebook family, my daughter Karla Mack who
volunteered on Friday even though she had to work (she’s an
Essential Worker in the Healthcare Field), Gabriella White and
her mom LaToya.

Corporate Sponsor Steve Davis, C&ES Consultants even came
out with his amazing wife and staff Dara Davis.
Mincy Pollock, Florida Blue, Steve Williams, Harbinger Signs,
Paul Tutwiler, NJCDC, Sheila Williams, JHA, Chiquita Moore,
Glendora McCargo, Jax Gents, Reylius Wonderfulcounselor,
Michael Hardemon, 40 & Older Club, Kalihah Hall, Daphne Colbert,
Nikki Evans, Tiz Onstead, Mackenzie Connor, Taryn Roberts,
Lucy Pearson donated and volunteered, Council members JuCoby
Pittman, Terrance Freeman, Reggie Gaffney, Gwen Nmezi,
Genia Northington, Shirley Murphy, JHA Staff, William Jackson of
Let The Bible Speak TV, Bernie Hamilton, Tia Jones Reed, my
JSO always come thru Octavia Felder Baker, Shirley Johnson and
the Gooch, Emma Holt ( Farm Share), grandchildren Quaneshia,
Qualea, Darius aka Debo, my ride or die my best friend, life partner
and husband Al.

Thank you to my First Coast News Sports guy and son Chris Porter
a true community advocate. Thank you all to those individuals far and
near that donated supplies via Amazon.

God Bless each of you. Another successful event.”