CDR to distribute free school-supply backpacks Aug. 20; supplies needed

CDR volunteer coordinator Tabitha Brown is heading up the School Supply Collective Drive.

BRANFORD — As the weeks dwindle to the first day of school, it’s no secret that gearing kids up with the supplies they need to succeed can be a pricey proposition for some families.

Once again, the Community Dining Room is asking Branford individuals, businesses, and organizations to donate brand-new backpacks and school supplies (listed below) as part of CDR’s annual School Supply Collection Drive.

Supplies may be dropped off at the CDR, Branford Town Hall, and Blackstone Memorial Library through Aug. 17. The CDR will be distributing backpacks filled with all the essentials to pre-registered students on Aug. 20 during its Tuesday night dinner on the Branford Green. The first day of school in Branford is on

“This initiative follows our mission,” CDR Volunteer Coordinator Tabitha Brown said. “CDR is more than just a meal. There’s no reason that kids shouldn’t have what they need to start the school year. They’re our future.”

Last year, thanks to the generosity of “so many,” Brown said, CDR provided over 140 students in Branford with backpacks chock-full of notebooks, pencil boxes, calculators, binders and other essential supplies.

The number of requests for backpacks is expected to rise this year, she said.

The items needed to fill the backpacks include lunch bags, pencils and pens, 1-, 2- and 3-inch binders, folders, composition notebooks, three- and five- subject notebooks, markers/crayons/colored pencils, glue and gluesticks, highlighters, loose leaf paper, pencil boxes and pencil pouches, rulers, kid scissors, erasers, and calculators.

To pre-register, parents or guardians should sign up in advance with valid identification to verify residency in Branford at CDR, 30 Harrison Ave. CDR is open seven days a week from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

For more information on the backpack program, contact Tabitha Brown at 203-488-9750 (ext. 2) or email

Connecticut Media Group