National Backpack Program Has Helped More Than Three Million Kids Since 2001

LAS VEGAS, NEV., AUGUST 12, 2013  With the beginning of the new school year just a few weeks away, the Office Depot Foundation is preparing to donate 3,000 colorful new sackpacks containing essential school supplies to kids served by nonprofit organizations, schools and agencies in the Las Vegas area.  The Foundation – the independent charitable giving arm of Office Depot® (NYSE:ODP) – will make the donations during a special Back-to-School Celebration beginning at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, August 14 (8/14) at the Office Depot store located at 3890 Blue Diamond Road in Las Vegas. 

In 2013, the Foundation will donate 300,000 sackpacks to deserving children in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and a number of other countries through its National Backpack Program, which is now in its 13th year.  During the past six years alone, nearly 15,000 Las Vegas-area kids have benefitted from this award-winning initiative.  

By the end of this year, Office Depot and the Office Depot Foundation will have given away more than three million backpacks and sackpacks since the National Backpack Program began in 2001.  If you put all three million children of those children together, they would fill Sam Boyd Stadium more than 81 times!  

The nonprofit organizations, schools and agencies scheduled to receive sackpacks on August 14 include:

• After-School All-Stars Las Vegas
• Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southern Nevada
• Child Focus
• Clark County School District
• Communities In Schools of Southern Nevada
• Nevada Children’s Center
• Nevada Youth Alliance
• The Shade Tree
• Sunrise Children’s Foundation 

Special guests expected to participate include:
• State Senator Michael Roberson
• Stephen Paredes, Field Representative for Congressman Joseph Heck
• Aga M. Pinkerton, Regional Representative for United States Senator Harry Reid

Also scheduled to participate are representatives from one of the Office Depot Foundation’s national nonprofit partners, the Kids In Need Foundation, which will be represented by the Teacher EXCHANGE.

“In keeping with our mission – Listen Learn Care – we are committed to making a difference in children’s lives by giving them tools to help them succeed in school and, ultimately, in life,” says Office Depot Foundation President Mary Wong.  “We are thrilled to know that we will reach our three millionth child this year, and grateful to Office Depot and our many supporters for giving us the opportunity to continue this program for its 13th year.”

The specially designed sackpacks come in six different color combinations with kid-friendly graphics. Each one includes a zippered pouch containing a pen, pencil, pencil sharpener, eraser, six-inch ruler and four crayons. They do not have any Office Depot Foundation or Office Depot logos or markings.

To place the sackpacks into children’s hands, the Foundation is hosting 25 Back-to-School Celebrations in cities across the U.S. and in Puerto Rico.  Five of these events – in Los Angeles, Charlotte, San Diego, Fort Lauderdale and New York - are featuring appearances by award-winning actor, comedian and host of “America's Got Talent” Nick Cannon.  

Thousands of sackpacks are being given to kids through the Office Depot Foundation’s continuing partnerships with 10 nonprofit organizations serving children nationally and internationally. The Foundation is collaborating with the AARP Experience Corps, Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA), the National Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) Association, Feed The Children, Food For The Poor, the Kids In Need Foundation, Zach Bonner’s Little Red Wagon Foundation, the National Foundation for Women Legislators, Operation Homefront and Samaritan’s Feet International. 

Thousands more are being donated through Office Depot stores in hundreds of local communities and in partnership with Office Depot’s Business Solutions Division in select cities. For the sixth consecutive year, children of the Navajo Nation in Arizona will receive sackpacks. 

More information about the National Backpack Program can be found on the Office Depot Foundation’s Facebook page at To learn more about the Office Depot Foundation and its initiatives, go to You can follow the Foundation on Twitter at; the National Backpack Program’s hashtag is #OfficeDepotFndnKids.

About the Office Depot Foundation 
The Office Depot Foundation is an independent foundation − tax exempt under IRC Sec. 501(c)(3) − that serves as the independent charitable giving arm of Office Depot, Inc. In keeping with its mission, Listen Learn Care®, the Foundation supports a variety of programs that give children tools to succeed in school and in life; build the capacity of non-profit organizations through collaboration and innovation; and help communities prepare for disasters, as well as recovering and rebuilding afterwards.  For more information, visit