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Originally published August 1, 2011 at 3:29 PM | Page modified August 1, 2011 at 5:31 PM

School supplies / The tools of learning: stability in a backpack

The school-supply drive of The Seattle Times Fund for the Needy runs through Labor Day. Please help homeless and low-income families send their children back to school equipped to learn.

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SUMMER moves along toward fall even when the sun is not shining. Overcast skies fit the mood of families dreading the expense of a new school year.

All those anxieties are compounded for homeless families looking for a measure of stability to secure an education for their children.

Reader donations to the school-supply drive of The Seattle Times Fund for the Needy have helped power an effective response, Project Cool for Back-to School.

The program is part of the Seattle/King County Coalition on Homelessness, which last year served 1,812 children from preschoolers through senior high.

"Children who experience homelessness, whether with their family members or as unaccompanied youth, are especially in need of the stable, supportive environment of school," notes Alison Eisinger, executive director. "Through Project Cool, children who may have lost most or all of their personal possessions can take pride in being well-prepared for class, just like their peers."

Reader contributions provide homeless children with the tools of learning and a generous measure of stability.

In addition to the homeless coalition, our school-supply campaign has two other valued partners: Hopelink and the YWCA of Seattle-King County-Snohomish County. All three agencies screen recipients, purchase and organize grade-appropriate supplies and distribute them.

Summer moves along. The agencies are organizing for the fall. Please join generous readers offering a supportive hand to needy students.

Readers are invited to send a donation to The School Supply Drive of The Seattle Times Fund for the Needy, P.O. Box C-11025, Seattle WA 98111. For donations via debit or credit card, email: pdelaney@seattletimes.com.

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