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Marshall Co. Organization Provides Desks To Elementary Students During Pandemic

Courtesy Gloria Hollifield

  A western Kentucky community service has provided desks to elementary students in need to use during remote learning. 

The organization Marshall County Desks paired students with desks that are sponsored through the elementary schools’ family resource centers. Organization leader Gloria Hollifield said the response from the community has been encouraging. 


“We put the Facebook page up on Friday, and the response has been overwhelming. There’s a lot of love and kindness and compassion in this community. That way the kids kind of see that ‘wow, look: this person in Australia was thinking about me, too,’” Hollifield said.


The idea of making desks began with a video, said Gloria’s husband, Jim Hollifield. Jim said he had just watched a nightly newscast featuring a young man from Virginia creating the furniture. 


A former carpenter himself, Jim said he became inspired by the DIY project and began to make his own as well. Gloria later suggested the desks be delivered to elementary students through local family resource centers as students continue at-home learning. 


“The goal is to get them district-wide. Their [elementary students] world’s kind of topsy-turvy not being in the classroom. They don’t understand a lot of the whys like older kids do,” Gloria said.


Credit Courtesy Gloria Hollifield
One of the desks.

 Jim also added something extra to the desks, which came by accident.


“I made a mistake and drilled the holes on the wrong side of the board one day,” Jim explained. “And I’m trying to think, ‘Well, what can I cover that up with? I’m going to cut out a little heart and see how that looks,’” Jim said.


The heart became a welcome addition to all desks soon afterward.


“It just wouldn’t be fair to put a heart on one desk. Everybody needs a heart,” Gloria said.


County family resource centers played a large role in pairing students with desks, she said. 


“What we’re doing is working through the family resource centers at the elementary school in the county… they graciously are distributing them, they know where the need is."


Marshall County Desks has since acquired sponsors from across the country, and delivered more than 40 desks since its inception in mid-September. The organization is currently accepting donations and hopes to expand deliveries to include middle school students.


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