350 kids in San Pablo get backpacks and school supplies from Family Giving Tree


The first day of the new school year can be intimidating, says San Pablo Mayor Rich Kinney, but equipping students with all the school supplies they need “is a great confidence boost.”

On Thursday, the city’s Youth Services Division announced that it received backpacks filled with school supplies to give to 350 children residing in San Pablo or attending a San Pablo school — all thanks to the Family Giving Tree.

For a fifth consecutive year, the city has applied for and received school supplies from the nonprofit, which assists low-income youth in the Bay Area. This year’s number of backpacks and supplies is two times the amount of last year’s contribution, city officials said.

On Aug. 10, city staff went to the Family Giving Tree’s Sunnyvale warehouse to pick up the backpacks and supplies. Students receiving the backpacks are identified by San Pablo schools.

“With this contribution, we will be able to support 45 homeless families and 30 additional high-need families,” said Megan White, community school coordinator at Helms Middle School, in a statement.

Dover Elementary Principal Ruby Gonzalez said having the basic tools to accomplish their classroom work and homework is “one way to help serve the needs of the whole child.”

“We are so very thankful to the city of San Pablo and the Family Giving Tree for networking to make sure our children and parents have one less thing to worry about and put a smile on our their face,” she added.

The Family Giving Tree raises funds and forms partnerships with businesses throughout the Greater Bay Area on efforts to assist youth who are eligible for the Federal Free & Reduced Lunch program.  Last year, it supplied backpacks to more than 32,000 K-12 students across the region.

Photo used as feature image on thr Family Giving Tree Facebook page.