Thank You for Making the 2020 Project: Back to School a Success!

Here’s something to feel good about: Thanks to your generous donations, our 13th annual Project: Back to School backpack and school supply drive was a huge success! 

Our goal was a fill 2,500 backpacks with all the things kids need to start the year off – notebooks, pens, pencils, folders, and more. But the support was so overwhelming, we were able to purchase even more supplies and distribute nearly 3,000 bags to kids in 35 shelters throughout New York’s five boroughs. That’s 3,000 – yes, 3,000 –children whose school year is off to a better start because of YOU! 

A boy smiles while holding up a blue backpack in his living room

A huge thank you to everyone who made this possible – to all of you who still took the time to consider the most vulnerable among us in these challenging times.

Special thanks to AIG who sponsored 1,000 backpacks filled with supplies – and to Hibercell for donating 120 backpacks!

A photo of two women standing in front of open cardboard boxes filled with school supplies holding up backpacks

Tonight, more than 19,000 homeless children will sleep in New York City shelters. Homeless kids already faced myriad challenges to succeeding in school, and these challenges have been compounded by the COVID crisis. 

Something as small as a backpack can make a huge difference in alleviating some of that stress.

Thank you for your ongoing support of Project: Back to School!

A girl in school clothes stands with her body facing sideways showing off the pink backpack on her back, smiling broadly

Pandemic Causing New York’s Homeless Population to Grow

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, there were almost 92,000 homeless New Yorkers.

However, now due to a rise in unemployment, opioid use, domestic abuse, and more over the past few months, experts believe that number has grown.

“We’re seeing increases in homelessness now particularly among folks who were very unstably housed to begin with,” said Giselle Routhier, policy director for Coalition for the Homeless. “So folks who maybe were renting rooms or didn’t have a lease in their name. And we’re very concerned about what we might see moving forward once moratoriums end and people with actual leases start to get evicted amidst the economic upheaval.”

September 23rd COVID-19 Virtual Memorial

On September 23rd, several New York City faith leaders and homeless advocacy and services groups held the third virtual memorial service to honor the many homeless and formerly homeless New Yorkers, as well as those serving them, who have lost their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thank you to those who joined us for our memorial services. To watch a recording of the first virtual memorial on May 20th, click here. To watch a recording of the second on June 24th, click here.

More »