The stores are packed with school supplies and the excitement is in the air. Back-to-school season is here! While some families may be singing “It’s the most wonderful time of the year”, many other families are facing the financial burden that this time of year brings.
While generosity flows more instinctively with holidays such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, it’s essential to help financially struggling families during the back-to-school season.
Here are some things that you can do to assist those in need.Back-to-school season can be a financial burden. Here's how you can help. #backtoschool #help Click To Tweet
Food bank donations
I occasionally volunteer for our city’s food bank. I remember being told during one of the orientations that the month of September (when most children go back to school) is one of the busiest months for the food bank.
When you think of all the expenses of going back to school, it makes sense that this would be a time that the food bank is most utilized.
When donating to your food bank, it’s important provide food staples such as tuna, soups, beans, and pasta. However, also consider donating items that are great for children’s lunch bags, such as:
- granola bars
- juice boxes
- pudding cups
- canned tuna salad / cracker packs
- real juice fruit gummies
- mini raisin packs
The tips in this article here can help you maximize your food bank donation.
Every year, our church does a school supply “drive” for families who are in need. There are many stores that collect donations as well.
Consider donating high quality items that can sustain heavy use throughout the year. Items which are often needed are:
- coil scribblers
- pencil cases
- glue /glue sticks
We watched for sales and got all the items off of one school supply list for less than $30! It was a small dent to our budget but will be a big help to a child in need!
While getting new clothes for your children, donate some of their old clothing to charity. I like to cycle clothes out as I purchase new items. For example, if I purchase two shirts and a skirt, I will donate two shirts and a skirt.
Fall and winter gear are especially critical. Snowsuits, boots, hats, and mittens are important to keep the kids warm while playing outside at recess.
Dig through your bookshelves for books that your children have outgrown. Books can be donated to libraries, charities, and even local schools.
Indigo has a Love of Reading Foundation which raises money to provide books to high-needs elementary school libraries. Their online donation form makes it especially easy to donate!
Other ways to help
These are just a few ways you can help families during this financially challenging time of year. There are many ways to help and make an impact. Watch your community paper, stores, and bulletins for opportunities to assist those in need.