100 Black Men of Madison to hand out 3,000 backpacks

100 Black Men of Madison to hand out 3,000 backpacks
Backpacks for Success

The local nonprofit 100 Black Men of Madison is preparing to give away free backpacks and school supplies to kids from low-income families.

The organization will hand out 3,000 free backpacks filled with notebooks, folders and pencils.

J.R. Sims, the spokesperson of 100 Black Men in Madison said the need for free back-to-school supplies has grown over the years.

Sims said he hopes providing these items to underserved families will ease the burden of trying to afford them.

“That frees them up. That frees other assets up in their budget to be spent on something else. Things as simple as food, electricity, telephone,” Sims said. “We hope that we’re providing just a breath of fresh air and a breath of relief.”

Parents attending the event will also be asked to sign a pledge promising to help their kids succeed academically this school year.

Sims said some parents in Dane County struggle to juggle multiple jobs and help their kids in school.

“Being active in the school, being active in your child’s education becomes less of a priority because you need to put food on the table, you need to keep the lights on and so a parent is unavoidably absent so we try to refocus that parent on the fact that they need to be engaged,” Sims said.

The Annual Back-to-School Celebration will be held on Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at Madison College.