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Back to school supply drives: pandemic changes

Published: Jul. 15, 2020 at 10:10 AM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The start of school is just weeks away, and organizers of one of the largest supply drives are rethinking the way they collect and distribute donations due to COVID-19.

Pikes Peak United Way and local non-profit, COSILoveYou, have changed the process of their “Backpack Bash” this year to ensure everyone stays safe.

“It’s remarkably different,” says COSILoveYou spokesperson Stu Davis. “Usually we love to do a community fair where people can come and play games and they can do activities together as a family ... obviously a lot of that has been tailored back, and so really we’re just focusing this year on making sure that they have supplies they need.”

This year, donations will be disinfected by volunteers wearing personal protective equipment before being sent out to 5 distribution sites where families of students will pick up supplies in a drive-though setting.

It’s expected that the pandemic’s financial impact will make the need greater than in past years.

“I think this is going to be the toughest start to the school year that we’ve seen in at least a generation, and so there’s going to be a lot more families in need of these kinds of items,” Davis adds.

Most needed items include hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, composition notebooks, and calculators.

Donations bins are at many area Wal-Mart stores through July 24th. Supplies will be given out August 1st, and volunteers are needed.

You can visit COSILoveYou’s website for more on how to donate and volunteer.

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