DIY Supply Drive Toolkit

You can set up your own school supply drive with these helpful tips.

DIY Supply Drive Toolkit

You can set up your own school supply drive with these helpful tips.
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With proper resources at their disposal, students find the confidence to return to school day in and day out. Teachers, too, are empowered to do their best work when they are supported by the resources they need to maintain effective, equitable learning environments. By hosting a supply drive, you support those who need it most.

Already have supplies collected? Go ahead and complete the supply drive donation form and choose which delivery option you'd like. We're proud to offer free shipping from anywhere in the country for boxes under 50lbs!

Conducting a school supply drive requires the dedication of some time, energy, and effort to mobilizing a group’s efforts.

Here are the aspects of your supply drive to determine before you get started:

Type of drive:

  • Collect supplies only 
  • Collect supplies + financial support (designated for supplies)
  • Collect financial support only designated for supplies (online and/or in-person)

Method of collection:

  • One-day event
  • Designated time frame of collection (week/month/etc.)

Additional collection ideas:

  • A one-day event where donations are brought to one location to fill a school bus/large truck.
  • A week or month-long collection with barrels or boxes in stores, businesses, and highly trafficked areas for people to drop off their donations.

Tips for Success

How do you want to collect supplies? Two popular options include:

  • A designated day, week, or month-long collection with barrels or boxes in stores and businesses
  • A one-day event in which the community brings donations to fill a school bus or a large truck, or supplies are collected in conjunction with a corporate, community, or sporting event

Who will you invite to participate? Engage the corporations, businesses, and individuals in your community who will help promote and support your project. Share details about your drive in your social media spaces. Issue a press release about your drive and follow up with local media about running your story. Create signs and posters to promote your drive.

Collect what students need most​. ​Kids In Need Foundation is delighted to accept all new school supplies; according to teachers, crayons, glue sticks, markers, notebooks, pencils, and pens are what they need most. Please avoid any used school supplies or items that have offensive words, artwork or symbols on the packaging or surface.

Try a friendly competition! ​Create competitions among businesses, departments, and individuals to see who can collect the most supplies.

Ship or deliver your collected supplies. ​When your supply drive is complete, simply click here ​to complete a supply drive donation form. On the form you will see two options for delivering your supplies to students:

  • You can ship your supply drive products, free of charge, with a special shipping label courtesy of our generous partner, Zappos, and their Zappos for Good campaign. All collected supplies will be shipped to the Kids In Need Foundation at no cost to you and distributed to students and teachers from low-income schools at no cost to them. Simply box up the collected supplies, print and attach a unique label for each box (up to 50 lbs) and drop your boxes off at any UPS shipping location…your donation will be on the way to making a difference in the lives of students! Click here for details.
  • If you would instead like to deliver your boxes to a nearby high-need school or Kids In Need Resource Center, we will connect you to the appropriate contact person.

Follow-up! ​Send thank you letters to all who supported your drive, letting them know how much their support means. Let them know how many supplies were collected and how many students will be able to participate in their classroom activities because of your school supply drive.

"Consistent access to free supplies makes the difference in a student's emotional capacity to learn and helps them to feel the support of their community for their learning."

-A KINF Teacher

“As a specialist teacher in music, I do not have students bringing school supplies to me at the beginning of the year so I rely heavily on Kids in Need for basic supplies like pencils, crayons, and markers. I see 500+ students and I go through supplies so fast!”

-A KINF Teacher

Students writing at desk

Tell the Story

KINF's mission is to see all children in America receive equal access to a quality education as it is the single most important factor in setting children up for success. Teachers remain the key to unlocking students' potential in the classroom as a stepping stone to the rest of their life.

The Need. More than 30 million students are enrolled in the federal government's free and reduced lunch program. For these students, school supplies are a luxury. Many arrive at school without a single pencil or notebook, unable to participate in day-to-day lessons and activities.

Show the Connection. When asked about the impact that access to free school supplies has students, educators reported the following:

95%: Access to free supplies is critical to creating a more equal learning environment for students.

91%: Increase in preparedness

83%: Significant increase in participation

78%: Significant increase in student self-esteem

“100% of my HS students receive free and reduced lunch, so it's really special for them when they get to use or keep high-quality school supplies. I've seen students become invested in learning after getting something as small as a new ruler or eraser. It sends the message that we care and that they deserve proper tools because they are worth it.”

-A KINF Teacher