Backpacks for Kids

About Backpacks for Kids!

United Way of Passaic County, in partnership with dozens of Passaic County organizations and businesses, hosts Backpacks 4 Kids! in 2023.

United Way’s school supply collection drive – the largest of its kind in Passaic County–is part of a larger United Way initiative to increase the academic success and high school graduation rates of children in Passaic County. The program is a combined effort between area businesses and employees to provide free backpacks and school supplies to children in need for the upcoming school year.

Each backpack contains: composition notebook, 24 crayons, pencils, 2 erasers, pens, and a single subject notebook.

2023 is all about options!

1) Give from home: you can select items for donation, purchase and have them delivered in one stop on the web! Visit our shop site at


2) Shop and Drop: We would love to see you at our drop off day! Wednesday, August 30, we are holding a donation drive-thru at:

Location - St Paul's Episcopal Church Parking Lot

Directions: Enter on Broadway via 451 Van Houten St and

E 18th St. Paterson, NJ 07501

 Pull into the parking lot and we will take donations from your vehicle.  

3) Coordinate your own backpacks and supplies drive.

View our suggested supply list here: Click here

Donations can be dropped off at the location above on August 30th.


Volunteers are needed to fill backpacks, count and sort filled backpacks, and prepare quantities for schools to pick up. To sign up contact Paula Smalling at

Who receives the backpacks?

Recipients include over 1,000 students in need at schools and community organizations throughout Passaic County. 

How can I request backpacks?

United Way distributes backpacks and school supplies to schools. For 2022 we have committed to providing backpacks and school supplies to School 15 in Paterson. Additional recipient schools and organizations may be announced in late August.

If you are a family in need of school supplies and you do not attend one of the schools we are supporting, please contact NJ211 for information about other distributions in your area. We will also share information about other distributions on our Facebook page.

Backpacks 4 Kids Flyer


You can also Sponsor a Classroom with supplies! 

Please see our flyer for more information: