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Dear Tom:

My name is Kyi (ki-e) Branch. Students in DC and PG county know me as “officer snacks” where I dress in a big, police dog costume and hand out nutritious snacks to the children of the community in our fight to end hunger. My husband, Jonathan Branch is a DC police sergeant who works to inform children about the role of the police.  We are passionate about community outreach as we visit schools to speak with kids on career day and distribute school supplies.

What we find shocking is how many children start school without the proper tools to succeed in their education, so we decided three years ago to do something about it.  In July, we host an annual “school supply drive/barbeque” at our home. We provide plenty of food and a moon bounce and we ask our family, co-workers and friends to bring new school supplies or a monetary donation.

The first year we were able to hand out 50 plastic bags full of supplies to students and the following year we gave out 116 bags.  This is our third year and we set a lofty goal to give 500 under-served students school bags full of supplies.  Since our aspirations are high and so much work is involved, we decided to get an early start.  Usually we place each child’s supplies in a nice plastic bag. This year I would really like to put them in backpacks. So our Christmas wish is to ask the TJMS to assist us in purchasing 500 backpacks, so we can fill them to the brim with school supplies.  Any portion that you could assist us with would be greatly appreciated!

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WEDNESDAY CHRISTMAS WISH: Kyi Branch  was originally published on