Employees at Tennessee detention facility give to neighborhood school

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Employees and guards at the West Tennessee Detention Facility in Mason are reaching across county lines to give back to a neighborhood grade school.

Paper and pencils are basic school supplies for students in elementary school. And now, students at Northwest Elementary have a few more supplies to choose from.

"Our employees pass by here everyday and we wanted them to be able to feel good about donating to their community," Melissa Nuce of the West Tennessee Detention Facility said.

Since the school sits less than a mile from the federal prison, officers and guards there wanted to do their part to give back to their community.

"I'm blessed. So you know, I just want to continue the blessings to someone else," Tanya Hajac of the West Tennessee Detention Facility said.

About 150 employees raised enough money to buy the students at Northwest school uniforms, backpacks, pencils, paper, and other needed school supplies.

Teachers said the $500 donation is one of the largest in school history.

"It would take a burden off the parents, and they can concentrate more on learning and helping their students," Linda Sanders of Northwest Elementary said.

Principal Santita Wright said Northwest is trying to build better community relationships through partnerships like this one.

"It's awesome. We're just so happy to have the supplies and the donations. Just to have the community recognize that we are here and we are providing the future members of their community," Wright said.

And now, Northwest students are a little richer thanks to eager employees wanting to provide for the future.

Click here to e-mail Justin Hanson.