Free school supplies for dozens of children


ARLINGTON, Va. - Sixty-five children will begin the school year with a free personalized backpack loaded with school supplies. Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington (CCDA) will hold the school supplies giveaway for children ages five to 17, at 10 a.m. on Friday, August 26 at Christ House in Alexandria.

"We want the children to know that we care about them," says Ruth Guillen, Emergency Assistance Case Coordinator for the CCDA. Guillen came up with the idea two months ago. "When I saw so many families with school-age children without resources, I knew I had to do something." She created a flyer requesting school supplies, and handed it out to donors at the CCDA Christ House who donated food or clothing for the poor.

Moses Cobb, a single father of two boys ages six and 11 says that he would not know what do without the help of CCDA in the new school year. "I hold two jobs, and every penny counts." He plans to pick up two backpacks for his boys Friday, and believes it will do wonders for their confidence on the first day of school.

In addition to receiving backpacks filled with school supplies, CCDA employees and volunteers will provide snacks and refreshments for the children and their parents.

"As our students return to school, we encounter new opportunities to serve them in our daily lives," remarked the Most Reverend Paul S. Loverde. "The joy of giving-whether it's a new backpack, tutoring, our attentiveness, or another gesture of our love for them-awaits each of us, if we take the step. As the new school year begins, let us each look for ways to volunteer, serve, and give the gift of faith."

Here are the details:

What: CCDA School Supplies Giveaway
When: 10 a.m. on Friday, August 26
Where: Christ House, 131 S. West Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314

Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington plays a critical role by serving our community's most vulnerable residents, regardless of their background or religious affiliation. Our 15 programs cover five categories of services: Crisis Response, Dignity of Life, Health, Immigrants and Refugees, and Transformational Housing. Last year, Catholic Charities served more than 25,500 meals to the homeless, helped 58 parishes feed families in their communities, counseled 1,061 individuals, and provided housing and support for 95 men, women and children. Eighty-eight cents of every dollar donated goes directly to programs serving the 21 counties in the Diocese of Arlington.


The Catholic Diocese of Arlington is home to 458,000 Catholics living in 21 counties and seven cities in central and Northern Virginia. Parishioners live out their faith at 69 parishes and 5 missions located in seven cities and the 21 northern most counties of Virginia. On the web:


Angela Pellerano, Director of Media Relations for the Catholic Diocese of Arlington 703-841-2517, 571-215-8731 (mobile)