The start of a new school year is an exciting time for most children, but for homeless children, this is a time open to emotional and academic challenges. Without even the most basic supplies, these students start at a disadvantage that only gets worse as the school year progresses. The Stanislaus County Office of Education aims to provide local homeless and at-risk youth with new backpacks and school supplies – tools they need to achieve academic success — through Operation Backpack.
This year SCOE hopes to serve as many of the 6,500 homeless children living in Stanislaus County as possible. Filled backpacks donated by community members will be distributed to children in schools via school district homeless liaisons.
“Operation Backpack enables us to distribute backpacks to kids who wouldn’t have them otherwise and for us that’s huge,” said Stanislaus County Superintendent of Schools Tom Changnon. “We invite the community to support the homeless and low-income children and their families by bringing new backpacks filled with school supplies to one of the drop-off locations throughout Modesto.”
The Operation Backpack Drive is slated for July 19 - 31, and kicks-off with an all-day drive-through starting at 8 a.m. Wednesday at Alfred Matthews Buick GMC Cadillac, 3807 McHenry Ave. in Modesto.
“SCOE office is receiving wonderful support from local businesses and organizations like Alfred Matthews Buick GMC Cadillac, Sutter Gould Medical Foundation, Mocse Credit Union and the Elks Lodge,” said Changnon.
Additional information, including a full listing of all drop-off locations, how to volunteer, and the option to give online, is available at www.stancoe.org/go/backpack.