Moorhead Woman Gathers Backpacks from United Way to Donate to Others

Chanon Anderson has collected backpacks for New American children for the last five years

FARGO, N.D. — Stacks upon stacks of backpacks lined the walls inside the FargoDome, but a select few were stacked in bins, handled with care, and delivered to one Moorhead woman.

However, Chanon Anderson isn’t keeping any to herself.

“It’s just, you know, to help the families out, it’s like Christmas to me to give the kids their backpacks, the joy on their faces when they get their backpacks,” said Anderson, who volunteers at Brookdale Baptist Church in Moorhead.

For the past five years, Anderson has been collecting backpacks as a way to serve up smiles for New American children at the Brookdale Baptist Church.

“They come to our country with nothing, and they pay to come to our country. They’re not getting here free. It’s just neat to see them happy and they’ve got something to call their own,” said Anderson.

Anderson started with just 10 backpacks five years ago, but that number has grown to more than 50 this year.

“School supplies are expensive, so if it helps with getting a backpack with school supplies to help them into school for the year, then you know they have extra grocery money or extra gas money,” said Anderson.

Anderson, a mother of two, was able to get all fifty backpacks since she provided United Way of Cass-Clay proof of identification for all of the children in her church that were getting backpacks.

Her quest to collect the backpacks falls hand–in–hand with United Way of Cass–Clay’s goal to help kids thrive in school.

“So, this school supply drive, this is the twentieth year we’ve been doing this, and we know that making sure that children have what they need to start the first day of school on the right foot is crucial to their long–term success,” said Kristi Huber, the President and CEO of United Way of Cass-Clay.

Each of the more than 6,000 backpacks collected by the United Way contain essential school supplies that students need to succeed each year.

Now with more than fifty backpacks on her hands, Anderson says she’s still got work left to do.

“I just think it’s important that I’m giving back to the families since they’re all God’s children,” said Anderson.

Anderson plans on giving out most of the backpacks to children at Brookdale Baptist Church on Wednesday evening while hand delivering some of them.

United Way had a new goal of 6,000 this year and were able to exceed it.

Categories: Community, Local News, Minnesota News, North Dakota News