It Starts Today: How You Can Help Kids Make the Grade

Buy a backpack; change a life.

You remember the excitement of going to the store and picking out your new backpack and then filling it with crayons, glue sticks, pens and pencils (I loved getting a new Trapper Keeper).  Sadly, too many of our children do not get that opportunity because their parents cannot afford to buy basic school supplies.

Picking out a backpack

A West Orem Family YMCA Day Camper participates in the YMCA Operation Backpack news conference.

That’s why the 8th Annual YMCA Operation Backpack, Houston’s largest school supply drive, is gearing up to help more than 45,000 Houston area children start the school year off right.  The YMCA of Greater Houston mobilizes 35 YMCAs, local companies, civic organizations and dozens of churches to help collect thousands of backpacks and school supplies for children who might otherwise head back to school unprepared.

“Many parents in our community don’t have the money to buy the supplies their kids need to start the school year,” said Jamie Clark, YMCA Chaplain.  “That can be disheartening to the parent, but it can also be life changing to the child. The YMCA is here to assist those families with helping their children have a successful year.”

Last year, YMCA Operation Backpack impacted the lives of more than 40,300 students in 31 participating school districts for a total of more than $1 million in donations.

So how can you help? Starting today you can buy a backpack, fill it with school supplies and drop it off at your local YMCA.  Shoe Carnival and H-E-B will also be collecting backpacks and school supplies at participating store locations throughout the Houston area.  Or, when you shop at HEB, you can make a donation at the register using their “tear pads.”

Make a donation at the register at your local HEB

Thanks to HEB, you can donate to YMCA Operation Backpack when you buy your groceries.

Don’t feel like shopping?  How about dinner?  Eat at any local Fuddruckers on July 19, or at Luby’s on August 10, between 4 and 8pm.  On those days, 10% of all proceeds will benefit YMCA Operation Backpack.

Click here for additional drop off information, including a suggested list of school supplies. All collected backpacks and school supplies will be distributed to children in need within the 31 participating school districts.  The campaign runs through August 12.

Thanks also to KTRK Channel 13, KSBJ, Gulf States Toyota, Home Depot, and Kiddie, for their strong support of YMCA Operation Backpack.


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2 Responses to It Starts Today: How You Can Help Kids Make the Grade

  1. Thanks for doing this! People in every city should get involved in a school supply drive… It is a great way to make a difference.

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