Back–pack- 2 School Initiative to Help Children in the Community Have an Equal Start to the School Year

Back –Pack- 2 School is an initiative to help less fortunate children and their families have an equal start to the school year.  This summer, the Seaway Mall is asking the community to help donate pencils, paper, blinders, backpacks, lunch pails and any other school supplies, and drop them off at Customer Service between July 23 to August 24.

The proceeds will benefit the YWCA Niagara, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing shelter, food and assistance to women and families in poverty.

Last year, the YWCA Niagara gave shelter to more than 150 children who had to stay at the Emergency Shelter. They also provided off site transitional housing units to 63 children and their families, helping children find a secure place to sleep and providing them with lunch in paper bags during the school year.

“Homelessness affects children in unique and sometimes surprising ways,” said Franziska Emslie, YWCA’s Community and Public Relations Coordinator. “They may not be the ones who have to worry about how to pay the bills or how to find an affordable apartment. For them, it is the little things. For them, homelessness means coming to school with their lunch packed in a paper bag rather than in one of the colourful lunch boxes the other children have… We are so grateful that Seaway Mall is helping us to send the kids in shelter off to a good start to school this September.”

“When we heard that something as simple as not having a lunch box could single out kids in a bad economic situation, we knew we had to help,” said the President of the Seaway Mall, Mike Belcastro. “We believe children deserve an equal start to the school year and therefore decided to show children their community is willing to help them out,” he continued.

Our goal is to provide 200 children with school supplies for this coming school year.