Back-to-School Backpacks for Students in Columbia County

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SCOTT TOWNSHIP, Pa. --  We know it's hard to think about school on hot, sunny days like this one, but for most kids, school starts in only a few weeks.

Getting all kids ready to roll with all the right supplies was the goal of a business in Columbia County.

For a kid, it's pretty exciting to get a backpack full of new school supplies to start the school year off right.

On Wednesday in Scott Township, near Bloomsburg, 450 kids got a backpack full of supplies for free.

"Our goal is to make sure every child has the tools they need to succeed in school," said account manager Katie Troutman.

Sykes Enterprises is a call center, providing customer service to other companies. On this day, workers provided a back-to-school giveaway for kids in the community at no charge to anybody who showed up.

Nicole Diaz from Danville brought two of her kids.

"With the school shopping and everything, having so many kids, things get expensive. It definitely helps a lot," Diaz said.

They loved looking through their loot. And what they found? Binders, pencils, glue sticks and a lot more -- a good start to what they'll need for the school year, which their mom says they are looking forward to.

"They're so excited. They're so ready. They've been counting down the days till school starts."

This is the third annual backpack giveaway.

Sykes site director Patrick Gilbert says it's one of the biggest community outreach programs they do.

"Our motto here at Sykes is that we help people one caring interaction at a time. We feel that extends beyond the customer service we do. It extends out into the community," Gilbert said.

It's the Sykes employees who donate all of the supplies. It's paid for through various fundraisers they hold during the year.

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