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Backpacks for Kids 2020


United Way’s Backpacks for Kids Kicks Off This Summer

Although back to school may look different this year, there’s one thing that’s for sure: students will still need the right tools to succeed.

That is why the United Way of Pictou County is launching a Backpacks for Kids program – to assist Pictou County’s students with supplies they need to start their school year off on the right foot.

The aim of the program is to provide free backpacks and supplies to children in Pictou County living in low-income situations, with the intention of making starting the September 2020 school year as barrier-free as possible. The backpacks will be confidentially distributed to previously identified students in mid-August.

“In Pictou County, 22% of children and youth aged 5-19 are living in low-income situations,” says Ellen Fanning, United Way of Pictou County’s Executive Director, “Our target is to assist 200 children with support to ready themselves for school beginning in September.”

The Kinsmen Club of New Glasgow has recently donated $1000 to the program to help with the purchase of school supplies. “As the costs associated with school supplies are removed,” says Scott McKenzie of the Kinsmen, “low-income families and those living in poverty are able to allocate more funds to food security, shelter, transportation, medicine, and more.”

The Backpacks for Kids program is also supported in part through the Emergency Community Support Fund funded by the Government of Canada. “Charities and non-profit organizations are on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, acting as lifelines for many vulnerable Canadians,” says The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development. “The Government of Canada is pleased to support organizations through the Emergency Community Support Fund so they can continue their invaluable work.”

Those wishing to donate supplies can do so at any of the pop-up drives taking place around Pictou County this summer. The dates and locations of these drives are listed below:

Stellarton Town Square, 246 Foord St., Stellarton Saturday, July 18th, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Trenton Station (located across from Town Hall), Main St, Trenton Friday, July 25th, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Municipality of Pictou County Office, 46 Municipal Dr., Pictou Friday, July 31st, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Glasgow Square Theatre, 155 Riverside Pkwy, New Glasgow Saturday, August 1st, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Westville Town Hall, 2042 Queen St, Westville Saturday, August 8th, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Pictou Market Square, Water St, Pictou Saturday, August 15th, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Suggested items for donation include pencils, pens, binders, loose leaf, coloured pencils, and scribblers.

When dropping off supplies, physical distancing protocols must be followed.

  For more information of the program, contact Ally MacKenzie at the United Way office at 902-755-1754 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

More information can also be found on the United Way of Pictou County Facebook page beginning in July.


 Funded in part by the Government of Canada's Emergency Community Support Fund


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