Operation Backpack Helps Area Kids in Need Succeed - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Operation Backpack Helps Area Kids in Need Succeed

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Just before 10 a.m., many backpacks got snatched up by some very excited kids. It's part of Operation Backpack which is organized by Volunteers of America. This year, staff laid out more than 1,000 backpacks to give out.

“The whole community comes together to provide backpacks. Brand new backpacks filled with school supplies for children who are attending school,” says Sandy Isham of Volunteers of America.

With the cost of supplies increasing over the years, it's become more difficult for families to afford back to school supplies.

“Just having your children going to school in general can be expensive if you have more than one school, you're paying for school uniforms, you're paying for school supplies, you're paying for dues and fees.”

Right now around 3,600 kids are homeless or living in transition, says Katie Morales with the Washoe County School District. 

“Those who are living in shelters, living doubled up in our motels. Those who may not have the opportunity to go out and buy a backpack.”

Backpacks filled with school supplies were given out to children of all ages.

"We have backpacks from pre-K through 12th grade."

Local donors like Wells Fargo Advisors, Circus Circus, Rounds Bakery and Fingerprinting Express all helped.

“These are all different groups that do drives,” says Isham.

For these kids, getting the basic necessities for school means everything to them. 

"It's so important for the kids to have a level playing field. We know that education is the key to future success, so it's important to equip the kids to be ready for school."

If you'd like to help donate backpacks or supplies, go to http://www.voa-ncnn.org/. All the additional backpacks that aren't given out today will be given to Washoe County schools.

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