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Virtual backpack drives provides school supplies for students

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Posted at 5:49 AM, Jul 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-16 06:58:47-04

GRAND RAPIDS — Remember the excitement of back-to-school shopping as a kid?

While it may look different this year, there's still something fun about getting new school supplies. Unfortunately, many kids don't get to experience that same joy as their families struggle to afford the needed materials to start the new school year.

The D.A. Blodgett St. John's Annual Backpack Drive is back this year. They have partnered with the Sydney Paige Foundation for a special virtual event.

"We set up an online web page where people can donate, and then they basically make up the backpacks for us to put all the supplies in it," explained Alyssa Murphy, communication specialists at DABSJ.

"We need about 100 backpacks for grades K through second, another hundred for grades three through five, and then about 200 for grades six through 12."

There are around 800 kids in foster care in Kent County alone, according to Murphy. About 20,000 kids in Grand Rapids live in poverty.

"No matter what this next school year may look like, whether people are learning at home or in school, we still think it's incredibly important that the kids that we serve need the supplies," Murphy added.

The virtual drive ends July 27.