How NCJWSTL is helping 2,000 St. Louis children


Photo: Bill Motchan

National Council of Jewish Women St. Louis helped provide school essentials; clothes and other items to 2,000 St. Louis-area children during the organization’s annual Back to School! Store on July 19, 2020. College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving provided a distribution hub where volunteers picked up boxes of filled backpacks to deliver to partner agencies in the St. Louis area, which distributed the bags to clients and members.

National Council of Jewish Women-St. Louis will be hosting its Back to School! Store on Sunday, July 31. Socially distanced and contactless delivery will take place as NCJWSTL volunteers deliver 2,000 pre-filled backpacks to partner agencies that will distribute the backpacks to their clients and members. The agencies have pre-registered their children so that deliveries are age/size specific for each child.

The Back to School! Store reduces absenteeism by ensuring students have fewer barriers to attending school. Families have had to prioritize spending on food and necessities, so these school supplies are even more important as now, more than ever, St. Louis families’ resources are stretched. NCJWSTL is thrilled to be providing supplies to 2,000 children. While the event may not look the same, elementary students will still get everything they need to officially start the school year.

NCJWSTL is very proud of the Back to School! Store program. Over the past 22 years, this program has provided over 24,000 children with the new clothing and school supplies that they need to begin the school year on a positive note,” said Ellen Alper, CEO of NCJWSTL. “In an abundance of caution, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NCJWSTL is implementing the same, proven model utilized the last two summers. More than 400 volunteers have come together to pack and deliver supplies. We are coordinating contactless delivery of 2,000 filled backpacks to 70+ partner agencies that will arrange for pick-up by families. Students and families are referred through our partner agencies – this program is only possible with the incredible collaboration and support of community members and partners.”

Back to School! Store items are always new and include a winter coat, hat and glove set, personal care items like a dental kit, comb and hairbrush, Bombas socks, book, folders, glue sticks, markers, pens, pencils and much more.


Alper explained that NCJWSTL will continue to distribute coats, shoes, uniforms and personal care items later this fall/winter in partnership with schools through the Kids Community Closet program. There are 28 Kids Community Closets serving 32 schools in St. Louis City and County. Children who attend a participating school may access a Closet at any time and receive the new clothing that they need to be able to attend school.

To learn more about the Back to School! Store and how to get involved visit: