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Women’s Way Launches Annual Backpack and School-supply Drive

GREENFIELD — The 11th annual “It’s Blooming Backpacks” backpack and school-supply drive is underway by the Women’s Way, a program of United Way of Franklin County.

Every August, Women’s Way and community supporters of the popular event come together at Historic Deerfield to socialize, while supporting the needs of local school-age youth. This year’s main event is Thursday, Aug. 4 from 5:30 to 7 p.m., and costs $5 to attend, in addition to bringing one or more backpacks filled with school supplies (the address location will be given at the time of RSVP). To RSVP, call (413) 772-2168 or email [email protected]. Backpacks filled with essential school supplies are distributed to children and youth throughout Franklin County via the United Way of Franklin County’s 27 partner agencies.

Backpacks come to the United Way in different ways. Traditionally, an individual donor will take on the task of buying and filling a backpack. Other ways include groups of co-workers or friends collaborating on filling a few bags; companies donating supplies or empty backpacks; businesses and organizations holding school-supply drives in the workplace; asking employees, customers, and clients to donate supplies and/or backpacks (sometimes the company will buy the backpacks) and having a ‘stuffing party’; and collecting monetary donations and letting the United Way purchase backpacks and/or supplies. No matter how you participate, you will make a difference in the life of a young person.

Since the first annual “It’s Blooming Backpacks” in 2005, more than 2,500 backpacks with a value of nearly $200,000 have been donated and distributed. In 2015, nearly 500 backpacks were collected. For more information, visit uw-fc.org/its-blooming-backpacks, call (413) 772-2168, or e-mail [email protected].

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