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School is Cool distributes 2,516 backpacks to Poudre School District students

August 13, 2010

Several thousand students in the Poudre School District will benefit from the generosity of others as a result the 19th annual School is Cool program. Colorado State University employees and community members volunteered their time earlier this week to organize and stuff backpacks and book bags with school supplies.

Packs and bags delivered Aug. 12

CSU employees and community volunteers organized, stuffed, and delivered backpacks and book bags to 46 local schools this week.

All 2,516 packs and bags were distributed to schools Thursday. Each school determines which students will receive the supplies based on need. Families interested in obtaining School is Cool supplies should contact their home schools directly. Backpacks are not available at or through CSU.

“It’s a great way for these students, whose families might otherwise have had a difficult time, to get the school year started off on the right foot,” said longtime School is Cool committee member Lauri Gail Jones.

More than 130 volunteers

Backpacks filled with notebooks, pens, rulers, crayons and erasers were distributed to 46 Poudre School District elementary, middle school, and high schools. For a third consecutive year, scientific calculators were included in all middle school backpacks. Each backpack is filled with basic supplies that are grade-level appropriate.

Since 1991, School is Cool has provided free school supplies to more than 21,000 local students. This year’s School is Cool program was aided by the efforts of more than 130 volunteers.

“During these periods of economic difficulty, people are more and more generous with their time and donations,” Jones said.

Donations make a big impact

“When we showed up to stuff backpacks with school supplies, we were told that the backpack and contents we were putting together would cost a family $50 per child," said CSU employee and volunteer Melinda Swenson. "School is Cool is able to purchase these items for $20, so donations go a long way."

In its 19th year, the School is Cool outreach program has dedicated and highly efficient volunteers who enjoy making a positive impact in the Fort Collins community.

Well-organized, rewarding experience

“Working at School is Cool was amazing," said Swenson. "The volunteers came in not knowing each other for the most part, but by the end, we were working together like a well-oiled machine. If you needed help with anything, someone would show up and work alongside you. The committee did a beautiful job of organizing the volunteers. We stuffed a huge room of backpacks and organized them for distribution in just two hours.”

The School is Cool program is supported by a $7,500 grant from the Fort Collins-based Bohemian Foundation with assistance from the CSU Bookstore and members of the community.

Contact: Jim Beers
Phone: (970) 491-6401