It’s time to support your local School Supplies drive

As the back-to-school season approaches, now is the time to support local programs that provide children from low-income families with essential school supplies.

How big a problem is this? Staples says that its survey of Canadian teachers recently conducted with Vision Critical found that one third of students will start their school year without basic supplies, and that poverty is the number one reason they don’t have what they need.

It’s obvious that education helps people lead better lives, and prepares the next generation of employees and entrepreneurs for our local business community.

In Ottawa there are several programs that you and your business can support.

  • The Caring and Sharing Exchange’s Sharing in Student Success Program provides redeemable gift certificates to low-income families to help with the cost of their children’s required school essentials such as backpacks, lunchboxes, shoes, snacks and much more. Donations can made on-line and/or supplies can be dropped off at CAA (Canadian Automobile Association) and OPL (Ottawa Public Library) locations; see the web site for details.

  • “Help provide school supplies for children in need”, an article from the Ottawa Citizen.

  • The Staples for Students Annual School Supply Drive has generated $6.3 million for schools, non-profit organizations and community groups. The campaign helps local students go back to school with the essential school supplies they need. Each Staples Canada store collects and distributes donations for local charities within the immediate community surrounding that store. You can check on-line which organizations and schools your local Staples store supports.

  • The Ottawa-Carleton District School Board’s page for parents about List of School Supplies (this page has a link to a list of recommended supplies for elementary school students at the bottom, and instructions on how to get more information). A few minutes on the net will yield many more such lists.

  • “School supplies for under $15”, another article from the Ottawa Citizen has shopping suggestions.

While most programs prefer the flexibility of cash donations, sometimes you can also donate supplies. In-kind donations are easy even for small businesses; just add a few extra items to your next order for office supplies and donate them. Most programs request that businesses avoid giving branded items with corporate logos or promotional messages.

We urge your business to support a local program that provides children in need with essential school supplies.

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  • Meet Greg Graham

    Market Metrics Inc. helps knowledge-based businesses with strategy, planning and innovation and was founded in 2003 by Greg Graham, a seasoned marketing professional. Greg is a Certified Management Consultant (CMC), an Accredited Small Business Consultant (ASMEC), a member of the American Marketing Association, and holds MBA/BEE degrees as well as a Certificate in Strategic Management. He frequently performs consulting engagements on behalf of the Government of Canada's Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP). Prior to Market Metrics, Greg's 21 years of corporate experience encompassed tech start-ups through Fortune 500 companies.

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