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Back to School with the Broncos prepares young students, teaches careful budgeting

PARKER — Not everyone kept as detailed a budget as Courtland Sutton.

The rookie receiver, like every other player at the 2018 Back to School with the Broncos shopping spring at King Soopers, received a clipboard with a spreadsheet to keep track of school supplies to be purchased and the cost for each item.

So as Sutton watched his group's first subtotal on the cashier's screen near $100, reach the threshold and then cross it, his concern grew. He had been careful, but the bill exceeded his expectations.

Then King Soopers' discounts for school supplies rolled off, as did the concerned look on his face. Instead of facing a deficit, Sutton and the young boy, an 8-year-old named Kaden, had a surplus that left him with $12 to spend.

With enough school supplies and new clothes for the school year already in hand, Kaden could buy anything his heart desired.

So with careful planning and smart shopping, he left the store with what any 8-year-old child would buy with extra money — a little candy.

"It's an exercise in budgeting," said Allie Pisching, Executive Director of Community Development for the Broncos. "Each of our players have a budget spreadsheet and they're tracking with the kids how much they're spending as they're going. It's really a lesson in a lesson for them. King Soopers has this great setup for us where everything is all in one condensed area. They have great prices, they have stores all across the city, so being able to be here with $100 — kids are seeing that a lunchbox may be $15, but when they need two packs of glue and it's 59 cents, they can get it here. So there's a little bit of a math lesson that's going along with the event today, which has been fun to see for both the players and the students."

But the Broncos' aim to supply children with what they need for school didn't end Monday afternoon. Rather, this just marks the beginning of the 2018 Stuff for Students supplies drive.

Fans who would like to support young students who need materials for their burgeoning academic pursuits can donate supplies at every open training camp practice at UCHealth Training Center. People can also purchase donation boxes at Front Range King Soopers stores, or they can donate at checkout registers.

"Youth development is one of our key focus areas for the Community Development department," Pisching said. "And part of what we believe is important in youth development is preparing students for the next step in their lives. We feel that school is the foundation for everything these kids will participate in for the rest of their lives, so preparing them with the confidence and the supplies, specifically, to start the school year off on the right foot is really important to us. Because of the focus on youth development for our organization, we also identified players that this was equally as important to them. They had a school experience, a teacher, an experience at a Boys & Girls Club that really set them up for success and they're out here shopping alongside the kids to make sure they're ready for the first day of school when it comes around this fall."

Broncos players took 25 Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver members on a shopping spree at King Soopers to stock up on school supplies and kick off the "Stuff for Students" school supplies drive.

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