City of Binghamton, New York

Mayor David Announces Major Backpack, School Supply Giveaway


(BINGHAMTON, N.Y.) — Mayor Richard C. David today announced the City is partnering with two local organizations to provide hundreds of backpacks filled with school supplies to underprivileged youth in Binghamton ahead of the school year.

“For many families, the cost of purchasing the basic supplies that children need to succeed in school is a huge financial burden,” said Mayor Richard C. David. “Many children come to school unprepared as a result, putting them at an immediate disadvantage. We want to make sure no Binghamton student starts school without the necessary supplies, helping to ensure that every child has a fair shot at success, regardless of their family’s income.”

The City has funded the purchase of 600 backpacks and approximately 7,000 school supply items to be distributed for free at four giveaways in July and August. CARES (Community Advocates Restoring Educational Standards) and the Healthy Lifestyles Coalition, based at the Lee Barta Community Center, are hosting the giveaways.

In the City of Binghamton, one third of families and one half of all children live in poverty.

“Sending kids back to school is an expensive time for any family,” said Erin Monroe, Health Initiatives Manager for the Healthy Lifestyles Coalition, part of the United Way. “In Binghamton, where nearly half of all children live in poverty, back-to-school expenses can place a serious burden on families. We are grateful to partner with the City on this initiative, which will provide real and direct relief to many of the families we serve.”

The first school supply giveaway is scheduled to take place Saturday July 29 from 2 to 4 p.m. at 85 Walnut St. It will be one of three ice cream socials and school supply giveaways hosted by CARES.

“Underprivileged youth face a wide variety of challenges when it comes to succeeding in school,” said Denise Yull, President of the Board of CARES. “A lack of school supplies should not be one of them. We are thankful to have the City’s support as we work together to eliminate obstacles to success for our youth.”

The Healthy Lifestyles Coalition will be holding its school supply giveaway during its North Side Community Block Party at Cheri A Lindsey Memorial Park on Aug. 19.

The initiative, costing $3,560, is paid for through Community Development Block Grant Funding.

In addition to the backpacks and school supplies provided by the City, the Healthy Lifestyles Coalition is collecting donated items from community members, businesses and other organizations through Aug. 14. Donated backpacks and school supplies can be dropped at the Healthy Lifestyles Coalition’s temporary location at the Binghamton Plaza or at the United Way in Vestal. The Binghamton Rumble Ponies are also partnering in the giveaway initiative, and fans can bring backpacks and school supplies to any home game through Aug. 14 to donate.

The full schedule of school supply giveaways is as follows:

  • Saturday, July 29 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Mansion at 85 Walnut St. (CARES)
  • Saturday, Aug. 12 from 2 to 4 p.m. at Cheri A Lindsey Memorial Park (CARES)
  • Saturday, Aug. 19 from noon to 3 p.m. at Cheri A Lindsey Memorial Park (Healthy Lifestyles Coalition’s North Side Community Block Party)
  • Saturday, Aug. 26 from 2 to 4 p.m.  at the Broome County Urban League (CARES)

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