Add a Few Extra Backpacks to Your Back-to-School Shopping Cart

eHezi Borough of The Bronx, Ny, Education, Health, History, People, Westchester County, NY, Yonkers, NY Leave a Comment

Help Leake & Watts’ Kids Start the School Year Right

Two small girls are walking in the school yard to the entrance of school. Photo courtesy of Getty Images.

Low-Income Families Cannot Afford to Buy All the Items Students Need to Thrive in School

Your Donation to Leake & Watts’ Annual Back-to-School Backpack Drive Helps Provide Hundreds of Children with the Tools to Learn

“We need more people to step up and help”

Donations Preferred by Friday, August 18, 2017

YONKERS, NY — July 20, 2017 — Learning is a hands-on process. Writing, drawing, measuring, calculating, crafting, and organizing materials help children think, process, retain, and apply what they are taught. So, students need pens, paper, notebooks, crayons, rulers, and more to complete assignments and do their work, both at school and at home. Unfortunately, many families do not have the means to purchase the supplies children need for academic success.

That’s why each year Leake & Watts calls on the community to pitch in and buy extra supplies when they do their back-to-school shopping. Last year, the not-for-profit human-services agency collected hundreds of backpacks and filled them with supplies generously donated by individuals and corporations.

“Backpacks, notebooks, and markers are expensive, especially if you have several children in school,” explains Meredith Barber, senior director of institutional advancement at Leake & Watts. “Purchasing supplies is enormously stressful, both financially and emotionally, for families living in poverty, who are trying hard to send their children to school with the items they need. When we distribute backpacks and supplies to families, it lifts a huge weight off their shoulders.”

In particular demand are donations of backpacks for students, ranging from kindergarteners to 12th graders. Three-ring binders and dividers are greatly needed, as are composition and one-subject spiral notebooks. A full list of suggested items for donations can be found here.

The materials are earmarked for children and families supported by Leake & Watts’ education, preventive services, foster care, and juvenile justice programs, as well as families in need who visit the agency’s Soundview Family Resource Center. The agency helps more than 12,000 vulnerable children, adults, and families by providing them with resources and services that enable them to rise above adversity.

Items can be dropped off at the Leake & Watts campus in Yonkers, or the agency will arrange pick up of large donations of backpacks and supplies. Leake & Watts would prefer to receive donations by Friday, August 18, 2017 so the items can be distributed before school starts.

To arrange pick up, or make an in-person donation, please contact Jack Toone at 914-375-8794 or direct email to:

About Leake & Watts
Leake & Watts is a leading nonprofit social service organization, providing the most vulnerable children, adults, and families in the Greater New York City area, with the resources and skills needed to rise above adversity and positively direct their lives.

Leake & Watts delivers: innovative educational programs from early childhood through high school; dedicated support that facilitates safe environments for children and helps families thrive; result-focused programs that help youth involved in the juvenile justice system change the trajectory of their lives; caring services that help promote independence for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities; and pro-active community health initiatives that foster physical and emotional well-being.

Founded as an orphanage in 1831, Leake & Watts has been at the forefront of evolving community needs and become a leader in utilizing result-driven, evidence-based practices. Today, the organization’s work is a positive force in the lives of more than 12,000 individuals annually. In 2014, Leake & Watts was honored as the Gold Winner of the New York Community Trust Nonprofit Excellence Awards. For more information, visit

eHeziAdd a Few Extra Backpacks to Your Back-to-School Shopping Cart

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