Operation Backpack® – a community service of Volunteers of America-Greater New York – is New York City’s #1 back-to-school campaign that provides brand new backpacks and grade-specific school supplies to children living in homeless and domestic violence shelters.
Last year, every child in shelter who needed one - 19,000 students in Pre-K through 12th grade - received a full, top-quality backpack before for the first day of school, enabling them to walk into school on day one looking and feeling more like their classmates and less like a child in need.
Currently, there are nearly 22,000 children who call a New York City shelter temporary “home” and most are school-age. We know a high school diploma is key to breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty and homelessness, and for many children, a new, full backpack can make the difference between being excited to go to school and refusing to go at all. Having adequate school supplies positively impacts the rate of homework completion, class participation, and ultimately, graduation.
The success of Operation Backpack® relies 100% on support from the community. Please donate to support Operation Backpack® 2020 now or learn how you and your company or other group can get involved.