NEW ORLEANS (press release) – Son of a Saint, the nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring mentorship and transforming the lives of New Orleans’ fatherless boys, will host a Back to School Fair for its mentees and New Orleans-area students from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on August 7. This event will feature local community partners including Ochsner Health,  Capital One, Daughters Beyond Incarceration, Families Helping Families, the Greater New Orleans Immunization Network, the Institute of Women and Ethnic Studies (IWES), LCMC Health, the NOLA Public Library, NOLA Public Schools, the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission, Resilience Force, Shell, GNO STEM, Xavier University and the Youth Empowerment Project. Son of a Saint and their partners will be delivering services across the board to their mentees to prepare and excite them for the 2021-22 academic school year, including COVID-19 immunizations, health screenings, informational sessions, and educational and library resources.  

“Last year, the pandemic made school more confusing and difficult for students than ever before. This fall, we want to make sure our mentees enter classrooms equipped with a positive mindset and the resources they need to flourish,” says Son of a Saint Founder and CEO Bivian “Sonny” Lee III. “SOAS is excited to be working with so many incredible local vendors and are grateful for their support, which will make all the difference in setting our students up for success for the upcoming academic year.”
 
The fair will take place at 9:00 a.m. CST to 1:00 p.m. CST on Saturday, Aug. 7, at Son of a Saint’s interim location at 2541 Bayou Rd. Food will be served and provided by Son of a Saint, and seating will be provided by HAHOP. Vendor services for mentees returning to school will include:
 
● Vision and hearing screenings and a COVID-19 Vaccination Bus facilitated by Ochsner Health
● Financial literacy information station provided by Capital One 
● Special education information sessions facilitated by Families Helping Families
● Resource and informational table hosted by Daughters Beyond Incarceration
● Informational sessions for Son of a Saint moms and guardians, provided by the Institute of Women and Ethnic Studies (IWES)
● An Immunization Bus contributed by LCMC Health
● Afterschool resources contributed by the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission (NORD)
● Library cards, grade-level reading list, and additional resources, provided by NOLA Public Library
● School information sessions and McKenny-Vento Homeless Assistance Act information sessions contributed by NOLA Public Schools
● Hurricane preparedness resources provided by Resilience Force
● Nutrition Education Sessions provided by Son of a Saint Nutrition Educator Nikki Martens
● School and Return of Investment Information Session provided by Son of a Saint
● Organizational Information Session and Bicycle Giveaway contributed by the Youth Empowerment Project (YEP)
● Logistics coordination in partnership with the Waldorf School
● Back-to-school backpacks provided the collaborative team of Shell, GNO STEM and Xavier University
 
Since its inception in 2011, Son of a Saint has increased its mentee participants from 10 boys to now include 170 young men across Greater New Orleans. That constitutes a more-than-tenfold increase in its first decade. As Son of a Saint continues the crucial work of mentoring and enhancing the lives of fatherless young men in the New Orleans area, the organization is poised to add more programming, more mentors and more boys to its cause, reaching 200 mentee participants by the end of 2021. Son of a Saint holistically supports young men between the ages of 10 and 18, providing them with mentorship, education, mental health services and travel experiences, as well as internship and service-learning opportunities.
        
For more information about the organization, including programming, enrichment activities, leadership profiles and opportunities to get involved, visit www.sonofasaint.org or call (504) 655-8416. Son of a Saint also welcomes contributions or other donations, which can be mailed to 2803 Saint Philip St. New Orleans, LA 70119. Follow Son of a Saint on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter via @sonofasaintorg for live updates about the organization and its participants.