S.F. soup kitchen to serve backpacks to kids

St. Anthony Foundation staff Thursday will hand out 240 free backpacks filled with dictionaries, notebooks and school supplies to children in San Francisco's Tenderloin neighborhood.

The backpacks will be handed out at 5 p.m. at 109 Golden Gate Avenue, according to the foundation.

This is the fourth consecutive year that backpacks are being distributed, foundation members said. Foundation staff said many Tenderloin area children come from low-income families and are at risk for incomplete education and literary deficiencies.

“Many of the families we serve are the working poor, for whom 'back to school' items are luxury,'' said John Hardin, executive director of St. Anthony Foundation. “But for a child, a new backpack filled with great things can turn the first day of school into an excitement for learning and the new school year.''

The backpacks range in colors, sizes and shapes; some are pastel purple with appliqués, and others are made of forest-green canvass. Groups and individuals donated the backpacks through Family Giving Tree, foundation members said.

St. Anthony's Foundation was established in 1950 with a mission to care for San Francisco's poor.

— Bay City News

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