Register by July 31 for free school supplies

Backpacks event to benefit K-12 students

COVINGTON, Ky. – If your children need supplies for the coming school year, Northern Kentucky Harvest can help you out.

The non-profit has 1,032 backpacks containing paper, pens and pencils, and other grade-appropriate school supplies to give out to K-12 students – it just needs to know who to give them to.

The organization is asking parents and guardians to sign up by July 31 via email to be eligible to receive supplies the weekend of Aug. 13-14. (If more than 1,032 students sign up, a lottery will again be used to determine recipients.)  

In past years, Northern Kentucky Harvest distributed the supplies during a “Backpacks and Breakfast” event in the City of Covington’s Goebel Park. But with the pandemic continuing, it’s adopting the same drive-thru, car-hop format as the last two years to make the hand-off as safe as possible, said Northern Kentucky Harvest Board President Paul Gottbrath.

“We know there are still a lot of people out there hurting financially, what with the pandemic and higher grocery and gas prices, so we’re hoping we can connect with some of them and help them a little bit,” Gottbrath said. “As for the kids, it really gives your soul a boost to see how excited they get holding that backpack filled with markers, scissors, pencils, tablets, and rulers.”

How it works:

  • Fill out the form at BACKPACK REGISTRATION and hit “submit.”
  • The form asks for the parent or guardian’s name, the city they live in, email address and phone number, as well as the student’s name, the school they will attend during the 2022-23 school year, and the grade they will be in (since supplies differ by grade level).
  • The deadline is 5 p.m. July 31.
  • Recipients will receive a confirmation email and be notified by Aug. 1 with a time and day for pickup in the parking lot of Be Concerned, 1100 Pike St., Covington.
  • Drivers won’t have to get out of their car.

The event is in its 22nd year and has distributed about 16,000 backpacks over the years, with more than half of recipients each year from Covington, Gottbrath said.


The event is presented annually by Northern Kentucky Harvest in collaboration with Be Concerned and the Brighton Center.

Support comes from the Butler Foundation, the R.C. Durr Foundation, the Scripps Howard Foundation, the Western & Southern Financial Fund, the Summertime Kids Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Kentucky Humana Healthy Horizons Medicaid, the SofaGives Charitable Fund and St. Pius X Catholic Church in Edgewood, plus St. Joseph Catholic Church in Cold Spring and St. Timothy Catholic Church in Union.

Frisch’s, Harvest’s original partner in the event, will again participate by providing gift certificates for a free kid’s meal in each backpack.


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