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Where to Donate School Supplies To Help Kids

September 15, 2020

Backpacks, notebooks, No. 2 pencils, binders, calculators, new sneakers. Right now, kids across the U.S. are eagerly crossing those items off their back-to-school shopping lists. But in many parts of the world, families can't afford backpacks — or the things that go in them. In some countries, students even have to learn sitting on the ground because their schools can't provide desks or chairs.


Today, far too many children grow up in places where getting an education is hard. In fact, for 264 million children and adolescents living amid poverty, conflict, climate shock or displacement, it's almost impossible. COVID-19 has only made things harder, affecting nearly 1.6 billion learners in more than 190 countries and all continents. Up to 99 percent of those kids live in low and lower-middle-income countries


Since schools shut down around the world last spring, many children have been learning from home. And yet one-third of students — at least 463 million globally — lacked the school supplies and technology they needed to connect with their teachers and stay on track. 


To give every child their fair chance to learn, UNICEF immediately got to work, delivering learning materials and school supplies to children at home and supporting the creation of education programs on radio and TV. And though many kids, like these primary school students in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, seen above, are now going back to school, the need for school supplies is greater than ever.


Children from Syria, Yemen and Bangladesh still need notebooks, pencils, backpacks and sports equipment, now more than ever! But a whole new set of safety standards to protect children and teachers from the new coronavirus has added a host of new supplies to the back-to-school list: hygiene supplies, such as soap, hand sanitizer, temporary handwashing stations for schools, thermometers and more. 


Where Can I Donate School Supplies?


UNICEF makes donating school supplies easy. All you have to do is go to UNICEF Inspired Gifts and select the school supplies you wish to donate. UNICEF will deliver them where they can make a world of difference to a child and maybe even a whole classroom or school. Every child has a right to an education. UNICEF has supported that right for decades by helping people who wish to donate school supplies get them to the children who need them most. Click below to donate school supplies and read on to learn how UNICEF's continued efforts to donate school supplies ensure kids who live in the world's toughest places learn the skills they need for a brighter future.






Children can't flourish without education, especially in areas torn apart by conflict. By donating school supplies, you can help children learn to read and form the connections that make for peaceful environments. When fighting between armed groups in Burkina Faso destroyed or shuttered over 2,000 schools, denying some 330,000 children an education, UNICEF-supported Child Friendly Spaces kept children like these boys who are taking a break from their soccer game on track. UNICEF set up temporary classrooms, stocked with learning materials and recreational equipment, to help kids cope with the profound stress of living amid violence. © UNICEF/UN0237255/Figula 







With their backpacks packed, these kids are heading home after an enriching day at a UNICEF-supported learning center in Djibouti’s second-largest city, Ali Sabieh. In Djibouti, education is often out of reach for refugee and migrant children as well as for those who live in nomadic and rural communities or have special needs. To make sure all of Djibouti's kids get their fair chance to learn, UNICEF supports learning centers across the country, where children and young adolescents can build the skills they need to make their way in the world. © UNICEF/UN0199409/Noorani






With her very own notebook and pencils — plus the skills she learned at her UNICEF-supported preschool — Fafi, 7, is ready for primary school! Fafi lives in Ethiopia, where an alarming number of first-graders drop out because they can't do the work. But thanks to play-based activities, like art class and reading games, kids like her are developing the early literacy and communications skills they need to succeed in first grade and beyond. © UNICEF/UN0309462/Tadesse







Sophia (above left), 11, went to school with just one exercise book and one pen in the early days after 2018's 7.4 magnitude earthquake and tsunami destroyed her home and school in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. The disaster cost Sophia her school bag full of books, her laptop with all her homework and notes — and her computer games and favorite Disney movies, Frozen and Moana. When disaster strikes, getting children back to school is critical to helping them cope. Thankfully, Sophia didn't have long to wait. Her school was one of the first to get back up and running, thanks to a UNICEF delivery of 450 school tents, school supplies and 300 School-in-a-Box kits. © UNICEF/UN0251799/Wilander







Eleven-year-old Andres wants to be a scientist and astronaut when he grows up. But he lives in Venezuela, where the economic crisis has derailed the lives, safety and security of millions of children. Art therapy at a child protection center outside Caracas helped Andres (here, having fun with UNICEF's Regional Director of Latin America and the Caribbean, Maria Cristina Perceval) and thousands of other kids cope with the stress of an uncertain future. © UNICEF/UN0330462/Párraga






Top photo: Maasai students who attend a UNICEF-supported primary school in Kenya's Kajiado County are learning their ABCs and getting psychological support and age-appropriate training in how to keep themselves safe. © UNICEF/UN0323275/Frank Dejongh