Bless the Kids Back Pack Project was founded on the idea of
helping children in need succeed in school.
We started in 2003 with four of us sitting at a dining room table discussing what we could do to help children and families. In the beginning, we distributed
toiletries and toothbrushes at park outreaches and we took school supplies to mothers and their children at the local Gospel Mission.
In July 2004, we realized that many children we gave supplies to had no backpack and they needed more supplies than we were giving them. So, we took a new step forward and contacted our local schools. Every year since then, they have allowed us to "adopt" grade school children from low income, homeless and poverty families in order to provide them with a backpack, school supplies, activity books, small toys and toiletries.
Is there really a need for this? Yes, there is! When we talked with school principals, we found out there is a huge need and what we are doing is very helpful to them. We started by giving out 10 backpacks at a local neighborhood school. Each year, the project has grown. In 2010 we gave 82, in 2011 we helped 140, in 2013 there were 275, in 2015 we helped 380, and last school year we blessed 398 children.
Many children come to school without breakfast, lunch or lunch money. Those same children have no school supplies or backpack. The school feeds them and provides some supplies they can use while on campus. But, schools no longer provide what the children really need, that is all up to the parents. The parents haven't the income, so when the children leave school with their homework it's not completed properly the next day because they have no crayons, scissors, ruled paper or even a sharp pencil at home. These children have nothing!
In 2016 well over 500 children were in need. With help of our partners we blessed 398 of them with a back pack full of supplies...but needed to turn away 100 children because we did not have the resources to help them. That's where you can make a really productive difference in the lives of even more children. Our goal is to help every child that needs assistance and with your prayers and support we can!
When we gave away the first backpacks stuffed with school supplies & some treats, one first grade child said, "This is the best day of my life!" The next year another was overwhelmed because he got a ream of ruled paper for his very own. The year after that when we went to visit a school, one little boy named Jeremiah said "Is this mine? To Keep?!" When we said yes, he could hardly believe it. Every year, children spread out all of the things they receive and admired each item with looks of amazement and great joy. Teachers report back to us that the children have more confidence and do better in school because they feel special and have the tools they need to succeed.
For $17 - $20 per child we get a nicely made, sturdy backpack and stuff it with lots of great supplies, toothbrush/paste kit, an activity book, and every one of them gets a huggable stuffed toy and toiletry item. Check our Projects page for a list of what we include in the back pack.
You can Help! Please Pray for us and, if you can financially support us, Thank YOU! Click here to Donate via our Cheryl Birch Ministries site - Every size gift helps us so much!
Bless the Kids is an outreach of Cheryl Birch Ministries, Inc. We are a 501c3 nonprofit. Our sole purpose with this outreach is to help poverty and low-income children achieve greater success in school and to let them know that they are very special and important to our community. Our team is made up entirely of volunteers.
If you like our ministry to the kids you can support us by praying for us daily - that means more to us than anything! You can also help us by regularly using Goodsearch/Goodshop to search the web and shop online. It costs you nothing! Goodsearch gives us 1 cent per search and, when you shop by linking through Goodshop, the merchants donate 1% to 5% (sometimes more) of your purchase to BTK! (Choose Cheryl Birch Ministries as your nonprofit and all donations go to the back pack project).You experience huge savings at most major online stores and great coupons, too!! Click the Logo below and Check it out!