New York Students Receive Free Supply-Filled Backpacks

Christmas has come early for public schools in New York City. After the entire school system declared cafeteria lunches completely free of charge, a Brooklyn establishment took a step further. As a back-to-school treat, P.S. 276 provided 600 students with free supply-filled backpacks.

“When students have the basic supplies, their attitude, their behavior and even their self-esteem increases,” Dave Smith of KINF (Kids In Need Foundation) said.

Popular pen brand Bic was also in on the action. On average, Americans spend around $78.5 billion on back-to-school supplies annually. That’s literally a ton of notebooks.

“They were so happy and I’ve never seen them this way. They were so excited. I can see the excitement on their faces, they were thrilled!” teacher Alice Whitaker said. “They were so happy and they were looking at stuff that they never saw before.”

Over 22 years, KINF has donated $900 million worth of school supplies to children under the poverty line. Remember — there’s more to a pen than just ink.

 

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Be A 5-Star Hostess At Your Local Animal Shelter

For stray pups and wandering felines, an animal shelter is a stepping stone towards a forever home. Or at least it should be. Some promising residents become therapy dogs, while others find families through dating apps (yes, you read that right). Others don’t seem to hit the jackpot. If you’re an animal lover but lack the extra space for a furry friend, volunteering at a shelter might be the perfect side hustle.

As with any non-profit, making a difference isn’t just a monthly stint. Charity groups, especially those that cater to animals, require time commitments. Before diving into the deep end, arrange your schedule. Anyway, most organizations will indicate a minimum amount of hours for students or working volunteers.

Be ready to train. Depending on what you sign up for, training programs may or may not be required. After all, you don’t want to be chasing after a Road Runner stray without the proper equipment. When it comes down to actual tasks, work with your skills and strengths. Do you have an eye for photography? Snapping headshots of handsome adoptables may be the job for you. Are you hands-on and nifty with a comb? Grooming might be your thing.

Animal shelters are all about their tenants and like any hotel, require a load of maintenance. Beyond the animals, you can participate in clerical or manual work. Accountants are totally underrated, despite a slew of paperwork and finances pulled from medical care, neuter-and-spay services, and food alone. Similarly, anyone familiar with carpentry could construct pens and crates.

Supporting your cause remotely is also highly doable (and effective), especially in this day and age. Spread the word by posting your experiences on social media, handing out fliers, and inviting experts to speak at special events. If you have a nickel to spare, gather supplies. While most needed items are often laying around your storage cupboard, others are a little more elusive. Pay a visit to your local Pet Smart. Use Facebook to your advantage to call for donations. Consult sites such as Amazon or eBay — with caution!

If you’re big on events, there’s no going wrong hosting a fundraiser. Whether it be a birthday bash, a school fair, or simple food drive, donate your earnings to your favorite shelter. Even better, allot time to highlight your cause through a speech, video, or game. Learning is always fun when it’s, you know, fun.

At the end of the day, if you’re itching for a companion but can’t yet set aside the funds to care for one permanently, foster them. Falling in love with your temporary house guest may leave you in a sticky situation. Still, the outcome (usually adoption) is often heartwarming one.

Puppies in pet stores may certainly be more attractive than grown ones behind cage doors. Nevertheless, any dog’s eagerness to love and accept you are often immeasurable, regardless of breed or age. They are, after all, everyone’s favorite friend.

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NASA To Launch Reused Supply Rocket Into Space

For NASA, 2017 has been bustling, looking to save the planet from a threatening volcano and maybe ward off aliens on the side. Topping off the year with an impressive first, the agency is launching a previously-used Falcon 9 rocket into space.

SpaceX will launch 2.5 tons of supplies to the ISS from pad 40 at Florida’s Cape Canaveral, and it’ll do so with a rocket booster that’s been used before.

Normally, ships discard booster rockets in space, where they float off to… somewhere. Landing boosters back into Earth will potentially save millions on production and labor. That being said, NASA still remains meticulous about safety measures, despite SpaceX’s constant success.

“Some [rocket booster] components are removed and some new components are added,” Gerstenmaier [of the spaceflight committee] said… “There’s a detailed list of what inspections need to be done. They did a detailed test program. They did a detailed plan.”

It’s painstaking, but NASA is committed to running case-by-case checks. True enough, nobody wants a loose rocket hurtling back into the atmosphere.

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Woman Raises $227,000 For Homeless Samaritan

It isn’t everyday that people pay it forward to strangers. But in times of desperate need, you can count on dentists to work free and hoarders to donate supplies. You can meet a good samaritan anywhere, just as Kate McClure met Johnny Bobbitt Jr. The homeless veteran spent his last $20 on a gas refill after McClure’s car broke down on Interstate 95. To repay him, McClure raised over $227,000 in just under two weeks.

“I wish that I could do more for this selfless man, who went out of his way just to help me that day,” [McClure] wrote on the fundraising page.

With Philadelphia nearing the winter season, McClure made several trips down to the interstate to bring Bobbitt supplies. Determined to get the 34-year-old veteran back on his feed, she started a GoFundMe page, to which over 7,600 people have already contributed.

“[I] truly believe that all Johnny needs is one little break. Hopefully with your help I can be the one to give it to him.”

With more than $110,000 donated on Thanksgiving alone, the holidays couldn’t be more festive.

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U.K. Introduces Vending Machine For Needy

To alleviate the extreme hardships of those beneath the poverty line, volunteer groups have been acting in any way they can. From donating toiletries to providing temporary homes, the spectrum of helping is limitless. To serve as a quick fix for the homeless, Nottingham is installing a 24-hour “free purchase” vending machine filled with goods.

Stocked with items such as fresh fruit, sanitary towels, socks, energy bars and sandwiches, the dispenser will be located outside the Broadmarsh shopping centre.

To ensure users are able to acquire their fair share of supplies, Action Hunger will hand out traceable key cards. About 100 homeless citizens can procure up to three items of any kind per day. Outreach center The Friary will be in charge of distributing the key cards.

“We will be prioritising rough sleepers,” said Friary CEO Sam Crawford. “Not everyone who visits us is a rough sleeper, some are homeless in other ways such as those in temporary accommodation, so that would be who we would prioritise.”

While offering a hand to anyone in need is Action Hunger’s ultimate goal, donations provide only 50% of machine stocks. Still, Nottingham residents are welcoming of the new arrival, which may hit U.S. cities next year. Now that’s a jackpot!

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Doomsday Hoarder Sends Supplies To Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico may be underwater both literally and economically — but with the help of others, things are looking optimistic. While motor company Tesla is working on restoring the island’s power grid, celebrity chef José Andrés is feeding its hungry. 74-year-old Joseph Badame has now also become an unexpected hero. The doomsday hoarder donated his entire food stock to hungry victims.

Badame had gathered 80 barrels of food that each could sustain 84 people for four months. He said the food, which included dried beans, rice, flour, sugar, pancake mixes and more, would have been thrown away otherwise.

The doomsday prep began in the 1970’s. It was a project of Badame’s alongside late wife Phyliss. Equipped with a furnished bomb shelter, it’s no surprise that the supplies remained intact. The disaster proved that there was more to life than life itself — or the fact that it would end in an apocalypse.

“Phyliss and I prepared all this for one group of people and it turns out it’s going to help another group of people,” he said. “That’s wonderful.”

Looks like decades of stockpiling were truly worth the hassle.

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Texan Uses Coupon Collection To Help Hurricane Victims

The aftermath of Hurricane Harvey has proved to be equally as hopeful as it was devastating. People are doing all they can for one another, from making pizza deliveries to baking thousands of loaves of bread. A month after the floods, this Texan mom continues to give back, using her coupon collection to help victims.

“Many hurricane evacuees are asking for pampers, wipes and formula. I don’t have any of that stuff in my stockpile but I have tons of coupons for them,”

Kimberly Gager collected coupons to the extreme, enough to stockpile goods to fill her garage. Neighbors have also helped fund her cause, in addition to contacting those in need of assistance.

“It is definitely a second job. I get very little sleep… Once I finish my daytime job, I am hitting the store. Sometimes I even do this during lunch, before work, everything.”
Like any working mom, Gager can’t avoid the wrath of exhaustion. However, she remains passionate about helping others, having been the victim of hurricane damage back in 1999. Gager continues to donate items, proving that being a hoarder can truly come in handy.
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