Help Collect School Supplies for Students in Need!


Backpacks from 2011 Event

A heartfelt thank you to our many volunteers who have spent hours collecting donations, assembling backpacks and assisting during these events.

A special thank you and acknowledgement to Dr. Katie Storey whose passion for serving others has motivated, encouraged, and sustained partners, donors, volunteers and recipients during the planning and implementation of these events. Her attention to detail and event planning skills have helped to make this a smooth and efficient success.  She was the driving force of Project Backpack at ECC and we thank her for her efforts!

Amybeth Maurer - Director of First Year Programs and Student Life, Elgin Community College

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It was the first year we have participated with Project Backpack, and we couldn't be more thrilled with how the process went!  From the start, we dealt with nothing but the kindest people all the way from the associates at the local stores who helped us get our supplies, to the selfless volunteers helping at the event. We were able to manage the event in an orderly fashion, where no one volunteer or recipient felt overwhelmed from the vast number of people present.  The recipients of the backpacks were so grateful for their new school supplies! It was such a great feeling to hand out more than 1700 backpacks and other school supplies to further help out the community. Overall, it was such a great event in which we assisted children who needed the school supplies so they can succeed this upcoming school year . We cannot wait to get more involved next year and possibly the years to come!

Peter Ulbert – President, Student Government
Nanci Alanis – President, Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society

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As a child, I was that student who had to wait in line with my mom, dad, and brother at similar backpack or supply distribution events.  In fact, it would be every year as an elementary school student.  My parents couldn’t afford it and we would rely on others’ generosity to make my school year a good year. This time, I got to be on the other side of the event: giving out the backpacks to those young children.  It’s so nice to see the hard work help so many people: countless hours of organizing supplies, collecting supplies from various donations areas, assembling supplies for two entire days, and so on.  The best part was I got to be that volunteer who helped to see the kids smiling  because I gave them their backpacks filled with everything they need for the school year.  I never imagined that I would be able to pay it forward to our future ECC students.  They got their backpacks at an ECC event, and if I was that student now, I know that I would feel so welcome to come to ECC because they gave me a chance to succeed. 

Taylor Lantz – President/Manager, College Programming Board

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I got to be a part of the volunteer crew where I helped people prepare to receive their backpacks.  There were countless times where family members told me that ECC’s Project Backpack was the reason that their children had  backpacks.  The economy has affected so many people and to offer an event at ECC where we could make those families and students less stressed was very empowering.  People were simply humbled and grateful to be at Project Backpack.  I truly believe that community members will continue to look at our college for inspiration and for hope that their children will have a great school year and even a future college experience here.

JP Mansour – President, Associated Nursing Students

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The excitement on the kids' faces said it all. It's easy to forget how precious a box of crayons might be to some children.  I feel renewed in witnessing that.  Please put me down for next year.

Gary Christenson – ECC Professor Emiritus

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Everyone that I was in contact was very grateful for what they received even if it was at the end of the giveaway and they didn’t get the same supplies as everyone else.  Even the little ones who weren’t eligible for supplies wanted what their big brothers and sisters received.  Without this event, many families would be struggling with when and how to obtain supplies while on a very limited or nonexistent salary.  We were able to serve in a very helpful and needed way.

Lea Conrad – Children’s Program Coordinator, Community Crisis Center

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Event Partners: Elgin Community College, ECC Faculty Association, ECCP3, Community Crisis Center, Kane County Regional Office of Education, Kane County Teachers Credit Union, School District U-46, and Centro de Información.