Would you want to start the school year without any supplies? For many kids, this is their reality. School can be hard enough under the best circumstances; imagine what it would be like if you didn't even have pencils?
This is the reality for many of the families with Old Pueblo Community Services (OPCS). On a mission to end chronic homelessness in Tucson, OPCS provides housing, food and support services to struggling families.
“Everyone values stability. Though kids may not say so, knowing they can depend on a backpack full of organized papers, pens, pencils, and art supplies is comforting for them," says Shawn Burns, Program Manager at OPCS.
Kid Volunteers pack backpacks of school supplies
On a hot morning in August, Kid + Family Volunteers form lines on both sides of long folding tables. In the middle, sit piles and piles of brand new school supplies. From folders and composition notebooks to pencil pouches and glue sticks, a year's worth of supplies ready to be stuffed into backpacks!
Kid + Family Volunteers grabbed a bag and moved down the line. Within 45 minutes, 114 backpacks were packed for the kids with OPCS.
Kids can focus on learning, not lack of supplies
"Arriving equipped for the school day also helps them feel confident in their ability to function in the classroom. Rather than depending on others for a pencil, they can, with the right supplies, achieve added independence," says Shawn.
When kids are part of a give-back activity they can immediately see how their time and effort will have a positive effect on someone else. Knowing that they are part of a project that will benefit others in the community is a boost to their ability to make a difference.
Kid + Family Volunteers assemble 114 backpacks for Tucson-area kids in need.
To learn more and get involved in our family volunteer projects, sign up for an in-person or at-home project today, or help us fund our family volunteer programs. Consider making a donation today to help fuel our programs + create more meaningful volunteer projects for Tucson families. ♥