For weeks, families have been out doing the traditional back-to-school shopping. With lists in hand, they’re buying new backpacks, pink erasers, crayons, binders and more. But for parents struggling to feed their children, purchasing new school supplies isn’t always an option.

Every year, Catholic Charities’ Emergency Assistance Center (EAC) in Leavenw orth hosts a back-to-school supply drive. This year, employees at St. Luke’s Cushing Hospital and Dillon’s, as w ell as St. Francis De Sales, Lansing, parishioners and many other individuals stepped up and donated school supplies for 286 backpacks! The items w ere distributed to local families in need.

“The best part of doing this is that w hen the child returns to school they have the supplies they need to make this a successful year,”
says Jackie Masoner, EAC manager. “Also there is nothing like seeing a kindergartener strut out w ith their backpack like they ow n the w orld! It is aw esome.”

Several parishes held their ow n back-to-school supply drives to benefit those served by Catholic Charities. At Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church, Shaw nee, parishioners donated 235 backpacks filled with school supplies for students in grades K-5. In addition, they contributed Ziploc bags, tissues, bleach wipes, hand sanitizer and baby wipes. Catholic Charities delivered the goods to New Chelsea Elementary, Kansas City, Kansas. School supplies donated by parishioners at St. John Paul II, Olathe, and Church of the Ascension, Overland Park w ere distributed to refugee children, as w ell as those served by the Mobile Resource Bus.