Nonprofits Prepare for Back to School

School is back in session, and for some students, this fall may be the first time they set foot in a classroom in over a year. While many back-to-school trends and styles have changed, one thing remains the same — challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a recent study from N.C. Department of Public Instruction, of N.C. third-graders who were tested in March 2021, 75% are not reading at grade level. Thankfully, the Triangle is home to many local nonprofit organizations that are committed to helping children and families prepare for a great school year.

Learn about local nonprofit organizations and how you can get involved:

Read and Feed

Cary-based Read and Feed aims to get children back on track for their academic goals. They have increased tutoring to twice a week and started using HELPS, an evidence-based curriculum developed at N.C. State University to help identify student ability and need. In efforts to adjust site locations based on community need and growth, Read and Feed will open six new sites this fall. If you’re looking to get involved, the nonprofit collects donations of gently used children’s books targeted for grades K-5, school supplies, and healthy snacks.

S.O.A.R. Outreach

S.O.A.R (Stay Out and Renewed) Outreach provides low-income and homeless youth in Wake County ensures all children have equal access to basic personal care and hygiene items. These simple necessities empower children, improve opportunities to excel in education, and increase classroom success in this vulnerable population of kids. If you’re looking for a way to get involved, you can host a hygiene drive through school, work, or in your neighborhood, or volunteer.

YMCA Triangle

In addition to before-school and after-school programs and track-out camps, YMCA Triangle is offering a new opportunity to support local families this fall. The Northwest Cary YMCA will be offering a Homeschool program for ages 9-11 and 12-15 this fall. These courses will offer hands-on opportunities for homeschool students and families in different areas including math, science, and language arts. Students have the option to register for individual courses or a whole day of classes. A full day includes lunch and recess free of charge.

Note in the Pocket

Note in the Pocket has served over 30,000 individuals since 2013 and continues their mission to provide clothing to impoverished and homeless children and their families. Currently, the goal for their Back-to-School campaign is to clothe 1,000 children before the new school year begins. Every Saturday in August, Note in the Pocket is hosting a clothing drive at their new location in Raleigh. Current wish list items include clothing for children of all ages (through high school) and gift cards to accommodate current needs.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Triangle

In efforts to collect school supplies and backpacks for area children, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Triangle is hosting several donation drives this month. The Morrisville Chamber of Commerce will serve as a drop off location every Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Items needed include backpacks, notebooks, pencils, scissors, and other school supplies items.

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