Applications for Operation Backpack will be available here, and at the locations listed below starting June 19th, 2017.
Families may apply for one backpack per student, preschool through 12th grade. Free backpacks and supplies will only be given to children of families at no more than 200% of the federal poverty level. We try to give backpacks to as many children as possible, based on the greatest need determined by family income.
Applications will be available at the United Way, SIEDA, Crisis Intervention Services, or Love INC offices, at Oskaloosa Summer Lunch Sites, in the Oskaloosa Shopper, and End of Month Meal locations. Applications should be returned to SIEDA. Applications may be mailed or returned in person to the Oskaloosa SIEDA location listed below. NOTE: Please do not return to the school district or other agencies!
c/o SIEDA PO Box 28
114 North Market Street
Oskaloosa, IA 52577
Applications should be returned to the address above no later than July 28th, 2017 at 4 PM. If mailing, applications must reach us by the 28th. Please allow 7-10 business days to mail.
Late Applications: Applications for assistance that are recieved after the primary deadline (July 28th) will be processed, and considered based on availability of supplies. Approved applicants will be contacted in mid-August about pick up. Applications received after August 17th will not be considered.
School Supply Drive
Donations of NEW school supplies can be made at any of the following locations. If your business would like to be a community collection site, contact United Way of Mahaska County.
- Assembly of God Church
- Central Reformed Church
- Central United Methodist Church
- Dollar General (Old Walmart)
- Fareway of Oskaloosa
- First Christian Church
- Hawkeye Real Estate/Mahaska Title
- Hy-Vee of Oskaloosa
- Mahaska County YMCA
- Homestead of Oskaloosa
- MidWestOne Bank
- Oskaloosa Vision Center
- Peek-a-Boo Point
- Penn Central Mall Office
- Riverside Family Restaurant
- Smokey Row
- St. Mary's Catholic Church
- United Way of Mahaska County
Stuff the Bus
At the end of the Operation Backpack supply drive, donations are brought to the North Hy-Vee parking lot for Stuff the Bus, an event where an entire school bus is filled with donations. Community members are encouraged to stop by to drop off last minute donations and get a picture with the bus. This year, Stuff the Bus will take place on July 28th from 11 AM to 1 PM.
Other Ways to Support Operation Backpack
We are always looking for groups and individuals to get involved with Operation Backpack On average each stuffed backpack costs about $20. Contributions can be made in the form of supply donations and/or funds to help purchase additional supplies needed. Operation Backpack has distributed over 1,000 backpacks in the last three years to Mahaska County students. If you would like to support Operation Backpack and school children in your community, we also encourage sponsoring a certain number of students by donating a monetary gift to support the program. These donations are tax deductable, and can be delivered in person or by mail to:
Attn: Operation Backpack
c/o United Way of Mahaska County
500 High Avenue West
Oskaloosa, IA 52577
If you want to know more about how you can help local children get ready for the 2017-2018 school year, contact our office by calling us at 641.673.6043 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.