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Westport Gears Up For Annual Back-To-School Program

The Westport Human Services Department is seeking donations of new school supplies and backpacks for its annual Back to School program.
The Westport Human Services Department is seeking donations of new school supplies and backpacks for its annual Back to School program. Photo Credit: Vanessa Inzitari (file photo)

WESTPORT, Conn. – Westport residents can help neighbors in need with their fall shopping by donating school supplies and other items to the town’s Back to School program.

Headed by the Westport Human Services Department, the annual program offers new backpacks, school supplies and Payless gift cards to income-eligible families with children in the Westport school system. This year’s program kicks off Monday, Aug. 5, and runs through Monday, Aug. 12.

“As we draw closer to the start of this year’s program, the Human Services Department is beginning preparations to ensure that all students are well equipped for the coming school year,” Westport Human Services Director Barbara Butler said.

Through the program, which depends solely upon the generosity of community individuals and organizations, elementary through high school-age students can "shop" for all their supplies at Toquet Hall Teen Center.

This year, Butler expects nearly 200 students from more than 100 income-eligible families to participate in the program. As such, donations at any level are greatly appreciated, she said.

Residents interested in helping out can donate school supplies, gift cards or make a tax-deductible monetary donation. Checks should be made payable to “Town of Westport/DHS Family Programs,” with “backpacks” written on the memo line. Checks can be mailed to Department of Human Services, 110 Myrtle Ave., Westport, CT 06880, or hand-delivered to the office, located in Room 200 at Town Hall.

Donations of new school supplies of all types, including backpacks (the larger the better), may be dropped off at the office Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Also, gift cards in any amount to stores such as Staples, Target, Walmart or Old Navy will also be accepted.

Westport families who feel they may qualify for this program are urged to contact the Department of Human Services at 203-341-1050. Residents with questions about the program should contact Kevin Godburn, director of Toquet Hall, at kgodburn@westportct.gov or 203-341-1155.

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