School Supply Drive brings confidence to the classroom for hundreds of students

Every year, as a new school year approaches, Catholic Charities partners with parishes throughout the Archdiocese of Denver to organize a School Supply Drive, providing essential educational materials to hundreds of students.

According to the National Retail Federation, families with school-aged children averaged more than $840 on school supplies in 2023. For many families served by Catholic Charities, the growing price of supplies due to inflation, is insurmountable. The cost could potentially impede their grocery or housing budget for the month, leaving children with few to no supplies to start the school year.

“For families at Samaritan House and other ministries throughout Catholic Charities, we want to be sure that school is not another cause for anxiety or stress. We are thankful to the many amazing donors that contribute to share this vision with us and make it a reality,” said Mark Hahn, Director of Volunteer and Community Engagement at Catholic Charities.

Since the School Supply Drive began, it has connected generous donors with thousands of students, to help enrich education and build up that extra confidence as students enter their classrooms for the first time. Brand new backpacks and supplies do that by giving children one less thing to worry about when they are learning and growing.

Families such as Aaron Areolla and his granddaughters, who are part of our Kinship program, have participated in the Catholic Charities School Supply Drive since the girls were in elementary school. Back then, their school supply lists included crayons and colored pencils.

Today, the girls are in high school, and their school supply lists are a lot different. But they still look forward to coming to Christ the King parish in Denver to pick out new backpacks, folders and notebooks for the upcoming school year. As for their grandfather, he says it has been a saving grace that they can depend on year after year.

Thanks to the generosity of incredible donors, families like the Areolla’s are able to start the school year on an equal footing. The assistance provided through the Catholic Charities School Supply Drive undoubtedly impacts the lives of these children, fostering confidence and enthusiasm as a new school year begins.