Office Depot donated more than 500 backpacks filled with supplies to students at Neely-O’Brien Elementary School in Kent as part of its annual Start Proud program.
With support from Boise Paper (with mills in Minnesota and Alabama), families also received a $20 gift card to help with additional school supply needs. The students received the backpacks on Aug. 26, the first day of school.
Teacher Katie Sherrard received Office Depot’s All-Star Teacher award in recognition of her dedication to education and extraordinary contributions to the school. Sherrard will receive a new Lenovo IdeaPad 3i laptop, a Serta commercial motif bonded leather high-back executive chair and more, valued at nearly $2,000, according to Office Depot.
Local Office Depot and OfficeMax stores in the Seattle-area have been raising donations for the past three months to support the entire teaching staff at Neely-O’Brien, 6300 S. 236th St. in the Kent Valley. This will enable the school to receive thousands of dollars’ worth of additional health and wellness products, school supplies and more.
Customers who want to lend a helping hand can make a donation at the checkout counter of their local store through Sept. 25.
Neely-O’Brien was selected by Office Depot to receive the backpacks because it is considered a Title 1 school by the U.S. Department of Education, which means children from low-income families make up at least 40% of enrollment. That also makes the school eligible for federal funds.
The school supplies included notebooks, composition books, crayons, pencils, highlighters and more. Overall, each Start Proud backpack bundle will provide nearly $125 of economic relief to each recipient family.
Nationwide, Office Depot will donate and distribute a total of 18,000 backpacks filled with school supplies to students attending more than 25 Title I schools through its Start Proud program.