Operation Backpack

Helping Kids in Need Succeed

Operation Backpack® is VOA’s initiative to fill in the gap for children experiencing homelessness, poverty, and otherwise underprivileged circumstances. From now through September 2024, your donations will help us provide backpacks, school supplies, and funding for academic enrichment to unhoused and underprivileged children. Together, we can help ensure these children achieve success despite their circumstances.

Last year, Volunteers of America distributed close to 50,000 backpacks. Help us surpass this goal by supporting this work in your local community. Visit the dropdown below to learn how you can get involved.

Make A Difference with Your Local VOA Office

  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Shop our Roonga store for backpacks and supplies to be sent directly to our office in Chicago. You can also shop for supplies and stuff the backpacks on your own before shipping them to our office.
  • FUNDRAISE: Create a fundraising team with your friends, family, and coworkers working together to meet a goal. All supplies ordered by your team will be sent directly to our team.
  • VOLUNTEER: We are looking for volunteers to help us sort, stuff, tag, and organize backpacks. This year, our volunteer week will be from August 5-9. Email us if you are interested in volunteering during this time.
  • SPONSOR: Sponsor one of our Back-to-School events. Email us for more details.
  • MAKE A GIFTSupport this important work with your donation.

  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Download the complete supply list and go shopping for school supplies, then deliver the backpack to a drop location near you
  • START A DRIVE: Organize campaign drive with your company or community group. Check out our Giving Guide, where you’ll find information to help you get started.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Many children return to school without the basic supplies they need. Your donation can empower kids to start the school year off right through Operation Backpack®.

  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Purchase items from our supply list on your own and drop them off at the VOAMI Southfield Office in August or shop our online store to purchase grade-specific supply kits and pre-filled backpacks that will be shipped directly to us.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Your support and monetary donations are critical in changing the lives of our most vulnerable students across the state.
  • SPONSOR: You have the chance to make a difference and be a part of something bigger! Don’t miss our Backpack Buddy sponsor opportunity for children to help support their peers.
  • VOLUNTEER: You can personally sort and pack backpacks, and even write notes of encouragement to set kids up for success. Operation Backpack® relies on the kindness of individuals just like you to make the biggest impact possible.
  • START A DRIVE: You can organize a local drive and invite your friends and colleagues to participate by donating school supplies and backpacks using our supply lists as a guide.
  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Shop online using our online wish list and have the supplies delivered directly to our team in NJ.
  • OPERATION MINI GOLF: Help children in need get a brand new backpack stuffed with supplies to start the school year off right! Join us at Jersey Devil Golf and Fun Center for mini golf, a driving range, s’mores stations, food, drinks, and more. Register here or become a sponsor.
  • START A DRIVE: Using our supply list, collect supplies with your community or organization. Email us for more details about setting up a drive.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Your donation to Operation Backpack® is more than a gift, it’s a game-changer for kids in need.
  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Shop online for grade-specific supply kits or pre-filled backpacks using our wishlists on Roonga and Amazon. The items purchased through this store front will shipped directly to us at our office in time for the first day of school.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Your support and monetary donations are critical in changing the lives of our most vulnerable students across the state. Give at-risk and homeless students a chance.

  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Make an impact in the life of a youth in need by delivering brand-new backpacks & school supplies to a drop site location near you.
  • SPONSOR: Amplify our work and become an Operation Backpack® sponsor in the DMV. View sponsorship opportunities.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Your monetary donation will help us provide backpacks, school supplies, computers, and additional support to low-income students and their families. 
  • FUNDRAISE: Create your own fundraising page and encourage your family, friends and colleagues to help you reach your goal on our JustGiving page
  • START A DRIVE: Organize a back-to-school drive at your company, club, school, or place of worship to support the campaign.
  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Download the complete supply list and go shopping for school supplies, then deliver the backpack to a drop location near you
  • START A DRIVE: Organize campaign drive with your company or community group. Check out our Giving Guide, where you’ll find information to help you get started.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Many children return to school without the basic supplies they need. Your donation can empower kids to start the school year off right through Operation Backpack®.

  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Purchase new backpacks filled with grade-appropriate school supplies from our store. Backpacks will be shipped to your designated region in Pennsylvania to support students in need.
  • FUNDRAISE: Invite your co-workers, associates, friends, and family to host a collection drive, now through September.
  • MAKE A GIFTMake a financial contribution, so we can purchase and distribute the backpacks and supplies. You can also hold a collection event at your work, church, or organization and bring your donations to one of our offices in Pennsylvania.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Give the gift of hope this school year to help kids in need succeed at school.
  • SPONSOR: Consider adding your name to the 2024 list of strategic partners. Email us to learn about the benefits of early sponsorship commitments.
  • MAKE A GIFT: It’s not just about paper, pens, or binders – it’s about giving kids in need the opportunity to succeed in school. Donate today.
  • SPONSOR: Become an official sponsor of Operation Backpack® to support kids in Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth. Email us to learn more.
  • START A DRIVE: Organize a local supplies drive in your community or with an organization.
  • DONATE BACKPACKS & SUPPLIES: Make an impact in the life of a youth in need by delivering brand-new backpacks & school supplies to a drop site location near you.
  • SPONSOR: Amplify our work and become an Operation Backpack® sponsor in the DMV. View sponsorship opportunities.
  • MAKE A GIFT: Your monetary donation will help us provide backpacks, school supplies, computers, and additional support to low-income students and their families. 
  • FUNDRAISE: Create your own fundraising page and encourage your family, friends and colleagues to help you reach your goal on our JustGiving page
  • START A DRIVE: Organize a back-to-school drive at your company, club, school, or place of worship to support the campaign.

PREPARING THE NEXT GENERATION OF LEADERS AND CHANGE-MAKERS, ONE BACKPACK AT A TIME

Make a Donation

Donate funds to purchase backpacks and supplies for students in need around the country. For just $50, you can buy a backpack filled with all the supplies a kid needs to start the new school year.

Partner With VOA

With your help, we can provide backpacks and supplies for more and more kids every year. Email us to learn how you and your organization can support this work.

In The News

EVP of External Affairs Jatrice Martel Gaiter appears on SiriusXM Radio to talk about Operation Backpack’s nationwide impact.
Volunteers of America’s Operation Backpack program in New York City featured on CBS Evening News.
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