Every year our clients sign-up to receive a Back to School Backpack from Women's Centre of York Region. Each new backpack is age and gender relevant and contains (at a bare minimum) a reusable water bottle, a lunch kit, school supplies and a gift card to purchase additional school supplies needed.
In 2014, 97 back-to-school backpacks were provided to clients to ensure their children (and they themselves if returning to school) have the necessary supplies to participate in school.
Our goal - age and gender appropriate backpacks, water bottles and lunch kits for every applicant who expresses the need. We want to ensure families are equipped with these supplies so they can focus on other life necessities. We also want to encourage parents to provide healthy meals and water to their children to increase their energy and participation in school. By providing the supplies we encourage parents to think about and use them.
This program is offered to low income families in York Region who are current clients of the Centre, participating in at least one of our programs (Making Changes Life Skills, Financial Empowerment, Counselling etc.) More than 40% of our clients are low income households and 22% report they are single mothers with dependents under the age of 18.
In 2014 we served over 863 women at the Centre and our need continues to grow.
Funded by Newmarket, ON (July 2015)