Angels Over Sandpoint gears up for annual Back to School program

By Ben Olson
Reader Staff

The Angels Over Sandpoint are preparing for their 17th annual Back to School event providing backpacks and school supplies to children in Bonner County. Because many parents cannot afford to purchase all of the necessary school supplies each year, the nonprofit Angels make it a priority to assist these families so each child gets to start the school year as prepared as their classmates.

Priest River student Sitiva Ochoa sifts through backpacks at the annual Angels Over Sandpoint Back to School event in 2017. Photo by Lyndsie Kiebert.

“More than 2,000 students in Bonner County participate in the Free and Reduced Lunch program,” the Angels wrote in a statement to the Reader. “These are the students we aim to help.”

School supplies will be distributed in Sandpoint, Priest River and Clark Fork at the end of August. Families who register their children for supplies will be given distribution information.

The Angels have set a goal for at least 1,000 schoolchildren to receive supplies and backpacks this year, costing approximately $30,000, which is raised from various community events throughout the year, as well as private contributions. The program is operated by volunteers and 100% of donations received go directly to the program. 

The Angels also work with the Community Action Partnership to register families to participate in this critical program. 

“Each year letters are sent to local businesses and Bonner County residents requesting donations for the Angels Back to School program,” the Angels wrote. “We want to thank each business and individual who generously donated.”

Community members who wish to contribute are urged to make their donations right away since supplies must be purchased soon to prepare for distribution. Please send checks to: Angels Over Sandpoint BTS, PO Box 2369, Sandpoint, ID 83864. All donations are tax-deductible.

Families interested in receiving school supplies should contact the Community Action Partnership office at 208-255-2910. Registration will be open until Thursday, Aug. 15. Those interested in volunteering for the program should contact [email protected].

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