Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

Prepping for Back to School and BackPackAthon!

Beginning mid-summer, so right about now, Cradles to Crayons begins its prep for Back to School. This means that the items that we are requesting for most are school supplies or arts and crafts items. Along with clothing, school supplies are extremely important for children when returning back to school in September. Throughout the summer, we gather these donations and set them aside for our BackPackAThon, which occurs on August 8 in Boston City Hall Plaza. On August 8th, we gather a group of volunteers and employees and stuff backpacks with these donated items that we have been setting aside. Along with the items, we include a “Well-Wish Note” in every backpack. I have attached a picture of examples of well wish notes. Well Wish Notes are little notecards with words of encouragement that get put into each child’s backpack. For the last few weeks, I have been making Well Wish Notes since we will need well over 5,000 of them.

When volunteers come in to the Giving Factory for their volunteer visit, we set aside about 20 minutes in the beginning of the shift to have them all write well wish notes. This is the quickest way to get a variety and large amount of notes. Along with making notes, I have also been checking the ones made by the volunteers, just in case they are not appropriate. We have a lot of children who volunteer and we all know that kids say the darnest things. One time, I found a card that said “do not trust the white vans”. Although this is probably some good advice, it is not suitable for our backpacks. We stack the checked notes in piles of 100 to make it easier to count on the day of the event. August 8 will actually be my last day here, so it will be a great and rewarding way to end the internship. I will blog one more time before the event and one more time after so that I can share my experiences.