Volunteers Stuff Bags for Backpack Peoria

Volunteers Stuff Bags for Backpack Peoria

Volunteers stuff school supplies into 3,000 backpacks to give to families in need.
PEORIA – While some families are hitting the stores for some back to school shopping, the Peoria Dream Center is working to help out those who can’t afford those supplies.

It’s an annual project called Backpack Peoria, which is part of the week-long event, Mission Peoria. More than 200 kids come to Peoria to do service. Chris Rinkenberger volunteered to help.

"I struggle sometimes to you know, bring a pencil to class, but these kids, you know don't really have a pencil to take to class in the first place," he said.

Rinkenberger and others are stuffing 3,000 backpacks with items from the District 150 back-to-school list. Kits come with scissors, glue, paper and other classroom necessities. The bags will be given away to families who might not be able to pay for them.

"It's eye opening and it’s something you can, you know I’m from Peoria, so something where you can really give back to Peoria," Rinkenberger said.

Andy King, Executive Director at the Dream Center said all the backpacks will be handed out on the same day, along with other items families can use; in total $50 worth of goods.

"On the day kids will walk away with a uniform shirt ready for school. There will be a meal from Midwest Food Bank," King said.
He said some families wouldn't dream of spending that much on just one child.

"Especially a lot of the families we work with have a lot of kids in the house so you times the $50 by four or five and it adds up very quickly," King said.

The backpacks will be given away on Saturday, July 27th starting at 9 a.m. at the Peoria Dream Center.


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