Free School Supplies for Your Kids

If you currently have kids in school, even grade school, you already know how expensive it can be to purchase all the necessary school supplies. These supplies are very important for your child’s educational success, but the expense to purchase these supplies can be difficult to fit into an already tight budget. If you are a parent struggling to purchase the school supplies your kids need, there is help available. Below is a look at several places you can turn to for help.

Where to Find Free School Supplies
There are several organizations in the country the help low-income families get the school supplies their children need to start school prepared. Below are the top places to turn to for free school supplies.

  • Salvation Army. The Salvation Army is one of the top charities in America. They have a partnership with several retail store across the country, such as Wal-Mart and Target. These partnerships work with local communities to provide eligible families with the school supplies and clothing they could not otherwise afford.
  • Operation Homefront. This organization works specifically with families with parents serving in the military. They work directly with the Dollar Tree retail store through their Back-to-School Brigade to give students entering school a backpack filled with school supplies. Last year, they gave more than $5 million worth of school supplies to families across the country.
  • Kids in Need Foundation. The Kids in Need Foundation works with schools across the country that have a high enrollment of children living below the poverty level. This organization allows teachers to obtain a variety of school supplies to give to their students. This eliminates the need for the students’ families to purchase these supplies. Teachers must apply to the program and they must work at a qualifying school. Once accepted they will have access to a large inventory of school supplies. Teachers can order these supplies at the request of their students’ families, or upon demand.
  • Local Charities. Many communities in the country have local organizations that operate a programs designed to help prepare students for school by purchasing their school supplies. If you are in need of supplies for your child, you should contact your local school or your local United Way to see what programs are available in your area.

Cheap School Supplies
If you are still in need more school supplies after receiving help or if you did not qualify for assistance through these programs, you can still find many of the supplies you need for cheap. Bargain retail stores like the Dollar Tree will have many of the supplies you need for very cheap. Many other retailers like Staples, Wal-Mart, and Target have great back-to-school sales where you will be able to pick up many school supplies for very low prices. Be sure to keep checking your weekly mail flyers or check online to see when each store offers their special sales - Quick tip: If a sale or deal is extraordinary, purchase enough to cover the following school year as well.

If you still have some supplies that you cannot afford, talk to your child’s school or local community centers to find out if there is any help available. They may be able to loan you some of the higher costs supplies, such as calculators, or find an organization willing to help you.