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Backpacks for Kids

Every year, United Way Northumberland is committed to ensuring that children and families throughout Northumberland County have the school supplies they need. Our Backpacks for Kids program equips kids from JK/SK to high school, aged 4 to 17, with backpacks filled with essential school items. Back in 2005, we started with just 100 stuffed backpacks. Since then, we’ve distributed over 25,000 backpacks throughout Northumberland County, all thanks to the incredible support from our community.
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Backpacks distributed since 2005

The Backpacks for Kids program began in 2005 through a partnership with Staples Business Depot in Cobourg. Today, our partners include Staples, Northumberland County, Cameco, Ganaraska Financial Credit Union, Northumberland Sunrise Rotary, Port Hope Rotary Club, Sabic, Cobourg Lion’s Community Centre, Northumberland Food 4 All, Northumberland Labour Council, Hometown Bingo, and other local groups that hold annual supply drives.

In addition to these partnerships, we receive generous support from individuals and groups who make donations and organize supply drives.

The program unfolds over two days: Day 1 involves sorting and organizing supplies and stuffing backpacks, while Day 2 is dedicated to filling the backpacks with supplies. These backpacks are then picked up by local agencies for distribution to their clients.

The cost of a backpack falls within the range of $50 to $75, covering the approximate expenses of acquiring a backpack and filling it with necessary supplies for each age group.

JK - Grade 1

JK - Grade 1

Crayons, pencil sharpener, ruler, pencils, eraser, glue stick, scissors, facial tissues.

Grade 2 - 5

Grade 2 - 5

Lined paper, pencil crayons, ruler, eraser, pencil sharpener, glue stick, pencils, pens, highlighters, facial tissues, scissors.

Grade 6 - 8

Grade 6 - 8

Lined paper, geometry set, ruler, eraser, glue stick, pencils, pens, highlighters, Duotangs, facial tissues, calculator.

Grade 9 - 12

Grade 9 - 12

Lined paper, pencil sharpener, eraser, pencils, pens, ruler, binder, scientific calculator, USB stick, highlighters, facial tissues, pencil crayons, glue stick.

Parent, Backpack for Kids

“I have three kids and being a single Mom on a budget is hard, especially during back-to-school time. My kids absolutely loved their backpack and supplies and if it wasn’t for this program I wouldn’t have been able to afford all of these items. Thanks so much for having such an amazing program!”

Parent, Backpack for Kids

“I would like to thank the sponsors who supported United Way to help families like mine. We have been raising four grandchildren for the last five years and the Backpacks for Kids program was a great help this year. The children were very happy, and it was a surprise to have new backpacks for starting school. Thank you from my four grandchildren and me.”

Social Service Organization

“Thank you for doing the Backpacks for Kids program. You have no idea how much our clients appreciate it.”

For more information about Northumberland United Way Programs or if you're interested in volunteering, please contact Dianne Turk.

Day of Caring

Northumberland Eats

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It's our Radiothon &
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Today’s the day! Join us for our 4th annual Radiothon presented by Cobourg KIA, broadcasting live on Classic Rock 107.9, 93.3 myFM, and Oldies 100.9. We’re bringing the excitement to you from Lauria Hyundai in Port Hope and The Market & Smør in Cobourg. Your support directly benefits the Northumberland Eats Voucher Program and other essential programs. Tune in now and be part of the positive impact!