Local News


Thousands of students receive free backpacks

Posted at 3:40 PM, Aug 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-19 22:14:33-04

An annual backpack giveaway before the first day of school, hosted by Mariana's Supermarkets, switched locations this year, hoping to meet a greater need.

Back to school can be a financially demanding time for parents. According to a survey done by Deloitte, parents will spend nearly $500 on back-to-school supplies for their kids. For some parents across the valley, that's just not possible.  

"It's a hard time of year," says Tina Sanchez. "I needed some extra help with the kids."

Sanchez is a single mom of four.  

"I can't afford to buy backpacks for all four of them," says Sanchez.  

She's not alone. Clark County School District Trustee Kevin Child says there are thousands of families in his district that need that extra help.

"I have a lot of kids living on welfare checks," says Child. "Some parents are working three jobs just to survive."

That's why organizers moved this year's giveaway from the east side of the valley to the south central part of the valley.  

"It's just a more diverse location here," says the chief operating officer of Mariana's Supermarkets Ruben Anaya. "There are a lot of Hispanic people."

Organizers are hoping to give away 1,000 more backpacks this year than they did last year.