Domtar Donates $100,000 to Office Depot Foundation Backpack Program

In August, Domtar donated $100,000 to the Office Depot Foundation National Backpack program, which provides children across the United States the supplies they need for the school year.

Domtar’s donation will help buy 5,000 drawstring backpacks filled with essential school supplies. The backpacks will be distributed to nonprofit organizations, schools and agencies in the Charlotte, North Carolina, area. This donation directly aligns with Domtar’s Powerful Pages initiative, which shares the gift of reading and writing and helps equip students for learning.

Leveling the Playing Field

“The backpacks and school supplies we donate help to level the playing field and give these wonderful children a reason to stand just a little bit taller,” said Office Depot Foundation President Mary Wong. “We believe that every child should have the opportunity to go to school with dignity and hope. We are proud to make a difference in this community again this year.”

To help distribute the backpacks directly to children and nonprofit organizations, the Office Depot Foundation hosted back-to-school celebrations in more than 15 cities nationwide. The organization held a special kickoff event at Classroom Central, a regional nonprofit that equips students living in poverty with school supplies, in Charlotte.

The kickoff featured many special guests, including Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts, Charlotte-Mecklenburg School District Superintendent Ann Clark and many city council members. Domtar was represented by national account manager Laurie Walker and senior corporate communications manager Kathy Wholley. Wholley also serves on the board of Classroom Central.

“We hope these backpacks and the supplies inside of them help better prepare students for the school year ahead,” Wholley said. “We feel strongly that kids need to be well-equipped for school and prepared for learning. Domtar has always had the philosophy that children need to have access to the proper classroom supplies, especially writing supplies, and enough books to foster a love of reading.”

Essential School Supplies

The specially designed drawstring backpacks come in seven colorful designs, several of which are new for 2016. Each one includes a zippered pouch containing a pen, a pencil, a pencil sharpener, an eraser, a 6-inch ruler and four crayons. What’s missing is the Office Depot Foundation logo, which was purposefully left off so that the students carrying the backpacks wouldn’t feel tied to a charity.

For more information, watch a brief video on the Office Depot Foundation Back-to-School kickoff event.

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