Yonkers Daily Voice – “Yonkers Students Get Supplies For School”

YONKERS, N.Y. – With the new school year just days away, hundreds of Yonkers students will hit the classroom with a bag full of supplies.

A pair of “Backpack to School” drives around the city collected more than 1,100 backpacks crammed with the spiral notebooks, pencils and pens needed to get the year going, officials recently announced.

“The goal of this program was to bring together our communities in helping make sure all our students have the supplies they need as they head back to school,” Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said in a news release. “The tremendous support of our local residents and businesses speaks volumes to the strength of our city.”

Spano and Yonkers Superintendent of Schools Bernard Pierorazio announced the kick-off of their drive earlier this month. Together, the pair had hoped to collect 300 backpacks for Yonkers elementary students.

Late last week, Spano announced the fundraising efforts had more than tripled those expectations, collecting just over 1,000 backpacks for students. Pierorazio said the district will distribute the supplies to second and third-grade students in eight schools across the city.

“This is a great way to kick off the new school year and we are thankful for the outpouring of support from the city and our communities,” he said in a statement.

But the mayor wasn’t the only one packing backpacks for Yonkers children. Inspired by the city’s supply handout plan, Marathon Development Group and CLUSTER Community Services hosted their own “Backpack to School” party last week.

Joined by city politicians, the group gave out backpacks to more than 100 students living in the Jackson Terrace Apartments.

“It is important to keep our kids excited about learning, and we had a great time getting together as a community to kick off the school year,” said Krista Gobins, director of public relations for Marathon Development Group.

A recent study found parents will spend an average of $700 on back-to-school supplies this year. Both Spano and Gobins noted that for many city parents, that money is tough to come by.

“It’s times like these when our city can play an important role in bringing together our communities to support those who need a little help so that our youth have the tools they need to succeed,” Spano said.

By Matt Bultman with the Yonkers Daily Voice

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