By Victoria Merlino
With summer almost over and September looming, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and the Coalition for the Homeless are teaming up to give kids in need backpacks and other school supplies.
“Project: Back to School” is an initiative by the Coalition for the Homeless to make sure homeless school kids will have the backpacks, pencils, notebooks and other supplies they need to succeed during the school year. Queens residents can drop off donations to Queens Borough Hall, located at 120-55 Queens Blvd. in Kew Gardens, from now until Aug. 28.
“The backpacks and school supplies so generously donated by the people of Queens help level the playing field for homeless girls and boys, allowing them to walk into that first day of school fully equipped and ready for class,” Executive Director of the Coalition for the Homeless Dave Giffen said in a statement.
“More than 21,000 children will sleep in in NYC homeless shelters tonight, and so we are truly grateful to BP Katz for her dedication to helping so many of them start the new school year off right,” he continued.
The donation drive is looking for backpacks, #2 pencils, hard and soft pencil cases, pencil sharpeners, crayons (24-count boxes), colored pencils, washable markers, Elmer’s glue, glue sticks, composition notebooks, binders, ruled paper, safety scissors, pocket folders and scientific calculators.
The items will be distributed to homeless children throughout New York City.
Nearly 115,000 children experienced homelessness in New York City at some point last year, according to the Coalition for the Homeless.
There were 58,809 people, including 21,267 children, slept in a New York City municipal shelter on Aug. 12, according to the most recent census published by the Department of Homeless Services.