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Backpack Drive for Children Who Cannot Afford Them

The Hawaiʻi Police Department is proud to participate again in a backpack drive for children who cannot afford to buy them. As in previous years, all police stations around the island will double as drop-off points for persons interested in helping children in need. Backpacks may be dropped off between now and August 30.

Backpack1

Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaiʻi. The donated backpacks will be distributed to children at women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities around the Big Island.

This is the eighth consecutive year the Police Department has worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawaiʻi (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry).

Hope Services Hawaiʻi provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.

Backpack Drive for Kids Who Can’t Afford to Buy Them

The Hawaiʻi Police Department is proud to participate again in a backpack drive for children who cannot afford to buy them. As in previous years, all police stations around the island will double as drop-off points for persons interested in helping children in need. Backpacks may be dropped off between June 23 and August 30.

Hope Services Hawaii workers pick up backpacks from Officer Jason Grouns, Chief Harry Kubojiri and Officer Patrick Menino at the Hilo police station, one of eight collection sites around the island.

Hope Services Hawaii workers pick up backpacks from Officer Jason Grouns, Chief Harry Kubojiri and Officer Patrick Menino at the Hilo police station, one of eight collection sites around the island.

Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaiʻi. The donated backpacks will be distributed to children at women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities around the Big Island.

This is the sixth consecutive year the Police Department has worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawaiʻi (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry).

Hope Services Hawaiʻi provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.

Backpack Drive Raises Over 300 Backpacks

The Hawaiʻi Police Department is pleased to announce that families throughout the island donated more than 300 backpacks for children in need during a backpack drive between July and September.

Hope Services Hawaii workers pick up backpacks from Officer Jason Grouns, Chief Harry Kubojiri and Officer Patrick Menino at the Hilo police station, one of eight collection sites around the island.

Hope Services Hawaii workers pick up backpacks from Officer Jason Grouns, Chief Harry Kubojiri and Officer Patrick Menino at the Hilo police station, one of eight collection sites around the island.

During the backpack drive, all police stations around the island doubled as drop-off points. This was the fifth consecutive year the Police Department has worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawaiʻi (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry) and From Kids For Kids in the collection and distribution of these items.

In addition to the backpacks, thoughtful citizens donated numerous boxes worth of school supplies.

Police Chief Kubojiri said he is grateful for the community’s participation. “It is heartwarming to see the outpouring of compassion year after year,” Kubojiri said. “It is particularly rewarding to see how the number of donated backpacks has grown since this project began five years ago.”

Hope Services Hawaiʻi provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.
From Kids For Kids was founded in 2006 by Big Island resident Nani Welch-Keliihoomalu, then 10, who was responsible for distributing backpacks containing books, clothing, art and school supplies. Now 17, Welch-Keliihoomalu raised an additional $450 in cash donations for the project this year through her school, Hawaiʻi Preparatory Academy.

Kama'aina Motors employees display a truckload of backpacks their company collected after payroll clerk Ashley McCollum-Ranne (at far left) heard an announcement on the radio.

Kama’aina Motors employees display a truckload of backpacks their company collected after payroll clerk Ashley McCollum-Ranne (at far left) heard an announcement on the radio.

Another $250 was donated by the Ikitagawa company, parent company to Kamaʻaina Motors, Napa Auto Parts, Kamaʻaina Nissan and Kona Auto Center.

Iktagawa also collected 132 backpacks and several bags of school supplies after Ashley McCollum-Ranne, a payroll clerk at Kamaʻaina Motors, heard an announcement on the radio and approached General Manager Ivan Nakano about collecting backpacks from employees.

Other large contributors were HFS Federal Credit Union, which donated 75 backpacks, and Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church in Papaʻikou, which donated 12 backpacks.

Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaiʻi. The donated backpacks are being distributed to women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing around the Big Island.

 

Food Basket of Hawaii Begins Annual Backpack Drive

The Food Basket, Hawai‘i Island’s food pantry, will begin its annual backpack program in October, to help provide school children with backpacks full of nutritious food on a regular basis.  A nationwide initiative that the state adopted five years ago, the program has served more than 450 children in two schools over the last two years.

Photo: Courtesy of The Food Basket

Photo: Courtesy of The Food Basket

“On the Big Island, we have five elementary schools with free and reduced lunch registrations over 90%,” said En Young, The Food Basket (TFB) Executive Director. “The school with the highest utilization is at 97%.”  Part of the National School Lunch Program that provides meals to children on school days, the Free and Reduced-Price Lunch Program requires registration, and can therefore help measure food needs of a particular school and community.

“Free and reduced lunch kids tend to get their most nutritious meal at school, so we stuff a backpack full of canned food, beverages and snacks for them to take home—especially over long weekends.  We try to do this at least once a month, and every other week before summer,” said Young.

Young said that this year, with support from the Food Bank, Hawai‘i island United Way and a very generous private grant, TFB will be able to expand the backpack program to three schools and more than 1,100 keiki in the Puna and South Kona Districts. Every child in the school may receive a backpack, without being labeled as needy. “We qualify the school rather than the individual,” said Young.

According to TFB website:

  • Not having enough food to sustain a healthy life is a reality for 1 in 8 Americans.  This includes children and seniors.
  • The lack of proper nutrition affects the cognitive and behavioral development of children.
  • According to the United States Department of Agriculture, limited resources prevent more than 36 million Americans from getting enough food.

In Hawai‘i specifically:

  • 32% of those served by TFB have had to choose between food and rent or mortgage bills, 27% between food and medicine or medical needs.
  • Among households with children, 67% are food insecure, including 31% who are experiencing hunger.
  • 11 % of adults served are elderly (65 or older).
  • 25% of households served had one or more children under age 18; and 6% of households served had one or more children age 5 or under.
  • 63% of client households have a monthly income below $1,000

“It’s important for us to help the public become more aware of what we do,” said Young.
For us, we want people to know that the need is there, and even if we can’t serve everybody, The Food Basket can make a difference, and help feed hungry kids.”

The Food Basket is an island-wide, supplemental food network that, in partnership with numerous community organizations, collects and distributes nutritious, high-quality food to low-income households, the working poor, senior citizens, children, people who are disabled or ill, and other members of the Big Island’s most vulnerable populations. Programs include regularly scheduled soup kitchens and food pantries in East and West Hawaii. For more information, or to make a donation, please visit www.foodbaskethi.org or call 808-933-6060.

 

Annual HPD Backpack Drive

The Hawaiʻi Police Department is proud to participate again in a backpack drive for children who cannot afford to buy them. As in previous years, all police stations around the island will double as drop-off points for persons interested in helping children in need. Backpacks may be dropped off between July 8 and August 30.

Backpacks donated in 2012

Backpacks donated in 2012

Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaiʻi. The donated backpacks will be distributed to children at women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities around the Big Island.

This is the fifth consecutive year the Police Department has worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawaiʻi (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry) and From Kids For Kids in the collection and distribution of these items.

Hope Services Hawaiʻi provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.

From Kids For Kids was founded in 2006 by Big Island resident Nani Welch-Keliihoomalu, then 10, who was responsible for distributing backpacks containing books, clothing, art and school supplies.

Police Chief Harry S. Kubojiri offers police stations as drop-off points to make it convenient for anyone who wishes to donate backpacks for the project. “I again ask anyone who has backpacks their child is no longer using to donate them to this worthy cause,” Kubojiri said. “In past years your generosity has proven that the aloha spirit is alive and well when it comes to opening our hearts to children in need.”

Hawaii Police Department Backpack Drive Update

The Hawaiʻi Police Department is pleased to announce that families throughout the island donated 135 backpacks for children in need during a backpack drive between July and September.

During the backpack drive, all police stations around the island doubled as drop-off points. This was the third consecutive year the Police Department worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawaiʻi (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry) and From Kids For Kids in the collection and distribution of these items.

Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaiʻi. The donated backpacks are being distributed to children at women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities around the Big Island.

In addition to the backpacks, thoughtful citizens donated the following items for families that might not have the means to purchase them for their school-age children:

47 boxes of crayons
44 composition tablets
8 boxes colored markers
8 boxes colored pencils
32 boxes of pencils
50 spiral notebooks
57 folders
26 binders
25 erasers
19 scissors
16 bottles of glue
14 packs of binder paper

Police Chief Kubojiri said he is grateful for the community’s participation. “It is heartening to see the outpouring of compassion, even during these hard economic times,” Kubojiri said. “You have proven that the aloha spirit is alive and well when it comes to opening our hearts and lending a helping hand.”

Hope Services Hawaiʻi provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.

From Kids For Kids was founded in 2006 by Big Island resident Nani Welch-Keliihoomalu, then 10, who was responsible for distributing backpacks containing books, clothing, art and school supplies.