Bay Area Rescue Mission to give 1,000 backpacks to WCCUSD students

A local student receives a backpack and school supplies at the annual event held by Bay Area Rescue Mission in partnership with Chevron Richmond in 2018.

By Kathy Chouteau

This local backpack giveaway has grown from 20 backpacks donated 20 years ago, to 1,000 in 2020.

The Bay Area Rescue Mission (BARM) and Chevron are teaming up to give away 1,000 backpacks stocked with a year’s worth of school supplies to local students.

To receive a backpack with supplies, families must be enrolled in the West Contra Costa Unified school District and must register in advance by clicking here. Pre-registered families will be asked to pick up their backpack and supplies at the BARM parking lot at 123 Macdonald Ave. on Friday, Sept. 11, from 10 a.m. to noon.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, BARM and Chevron were unable to host their annual Back-To-School Carnival at Nevin Park. Still, they wanted local students in need to have what they need to be successful at school, whether they’re learning from a distance or in a classroom.

“Thanks to Chevron’s contributions, we have been able to supply a year’s worth of school supplies to our neighboring and shelter-based children,” BARM representatives said in a statement, adding, “We hope that these ‘Gifts of Love’ bring relief to parents as they will have one less thing to worry about, especially during a pandemic.”

At the giveaway event on Sept. 11, children must be accompanied by an adult and have a registration confirmation ticket to receive their free backpacks, which will be available in red, blue, grey and black. All attendees are asked to wear a face mask. Only one backpack will be given away per registered child.

For more information, contact the Bay Area Rescue Mission at (510) 215-4864, (510) 215-4555 or [email protected]. To learn more about the Bay Area Rescue Mission’s efforts providing food, shelter, clothing and other critical care to people facing homelessness, click here.