Back to School

When we supply children and parents the essentials for starting the school year with abundance.

Supplies that enable success

By providing the essential materials students need to attend class and thrive during the school year, parents can shift their attention from the basic necessities and can focus on more pertinent aspects of their child’s education. Children may receive additional attention from a parent who feels financial relief. In turn, children feel excited about starting the year with options and can have fun laying out their clothes and setting up their backpack for the first day of school.

"Ensuring students have the basic essentials to go to school and learn is extremely important to helping them succeed today and in the future. Every child deserves to have the best possible start in his or her education and the Pacific Power Foundation is proud to support an organization that focuses on helping students get ready to go back to school.”
Toby Freeman
Pacific Power Regional Community Manager

Free the Need launched the Back to School Giveaway in Siskiyou County in 2003. It has become a special community event that prepares children with supplies needed to succeed in school. The one-day free store provides children and teens with clothing, coats, backpacks, school supplies, toothbrushes, dental floss, personal care items and haircuts.

The Back to School Giveaway is a yearly program held in two Siskiyou County locations reaching children in rural outlying areas. To date it has assisted over 3,000 students and their families get ready for school.

In 2017, we held our first Back to School Giveaway in the San Francisco Bay Area. Modeled after the ongoing success of the Siskiyou County program with the assistance of our team of enthusiastic volunteers, Free the Need was able to provide stylish backpacks and essential school supplies for 50 school-age children.

More than 4,430 backpacks

distributed since 2003

Meet a student

"I like getting to pick out my backpack and clothes before school starts. All the school supplies are pretty cool too."

Parents all want their kids to have everything they need for a good education, but for some providing simple school basics and clothing can strain their finances too much making it impossible. Caring teachers do their best to fill any gaps for students, often dipping into their own pockets to stock their classrooms. The Back to School program certainly acts as a pressure relief for parents, teachers and student alike.

However it is the children that are impacted the most by this program on many levels. Overall they get to experience that there is enough to go around and that they have choices. At the giveaway event itself, children shop for their basics, choosing their backpack color and style, their different classroom supplies and clothing. There is an atmosphere of fun and anticipation for the year ahead of them. This adds to their feelings of self-reliance and encourages enthusiasm for school. Being at school with a fully stocked backpack of new supplies boosts confidence and contributes to a positive attitude in addition to being prepared to learn

“The Back to School Giveaway is pressure relief. My kids came home happy and well equipped. They slept with their new backpacks for 3 nights!”

2023 Giveaway Dates & Times

August 16, 2023: Siskiyou County
(8am: Yreka, 10am: Klamath River Community Hall)
August 18, 2023: San Francisco

Help a child reach their dream

Every time you share your surplus, you inspire abundance

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