Volunteers of America opens annual 'Operation Backpack' drive to equip needy children

Thousands of homeless kids are hoping big-hearted New Yorkers will step up and donate school supplies as part of the annual Operation Backpack drive which kicks off on Monday. Volunteers of America organizes the drive to make sure all kids start the new school year carrying a backpack filled with essentials. The group said back-to-school supplies cost an average of $81 per child, a price too steep for many homeless families. Last year, the group distributed over 13,000 filled backpacks to homeless children across the city. The goal for this year is 15,000.

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