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Press Release

20,000 Backpacks to Military Families

By Operation Homefront

June 24, 2024

Operation Homefront to Distribute More than 20,000 Backpacks to Military Families This Summer

Summer can be a busy and expensive season for military families. In response, national nonprofit Operation Homefront is stepping in to alleviate some of the burden of back-to-school preparations. During their 17th annual Back-to-School Brigade®, the organization will distribute backpacks filled with essential school supplies to tens of thousands of military children nationwide.

Back-to-school shopping is the second biggest spending event of the year for parents, and it comes at a time when many military families are relocating to new duty stations, which can cost thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket expenses. Operation Homefront’s Back-to-School Brigade® reduces the financial burden of purchasing school supplies and provides local communities with an opportunity to thank military families for all they do to protect the freedoms we, as Americans, enjoy daily.

“The new school year should be a time of excitement; however, the unique financial challenges many military families face – paying for school supplies, buying new clothes, adapting to new communities and schools – can easily turn this time of year into an extremely stressful period,” says Brig. Gen. (ret.) Robert D. Thomas, President and COO of Operation Homefront. “Operation Homefront’s Back-to-School Brigade® extends tangible thanks for the service and sacrifices of military families, while offering much-needed financial assistance during this particularly expensive time of year, helping military families thrive, not simply struggle to get by, in the communities they have worked so hard to protect.” 

The Back-to-School Brigade® is made possible in part by the support of organizations like Southern New Hampshire University, which has returned for a second year as the lead sponsor of the program. With a mission to transform lives by making high-quality education more accessible and affordable, SNHU has a long history of supporting military learners and has partnered with Operation Homefront since 2014, providing scholarships to military spouses pursuing their educational goals.

“At SNHU, we’re proud to partner with Operation Homefront to reduce barriers and open doors of opportunity for military families,” says Dr. Jeremy Owens, Associate Vice President of University Partnerships at SNHU. “It is with great privilege to once again support the Back-to-School Brigade® to honor the sacrifices made by military families, helping ensure that our military children have access to the resources they need to thrive academically and shape their future.”

The school supplies that Operation Homefront will distribute at dozens of events across the country are generously provided by Dollar Tree and its customers. Beginning July 5 and running through August 15, customers can donate supplies to the Back-to-School Brigade® program at more than 8,000 participating Dollar Tree locations nationwide.

Dollar Tree, a longtime advocate of military families, has partnered with Operation Homefront since 2006. Since then, Dollar Tree and its customers have made millions of dollars in cash and in-kind donations to the nonprofit’s recurring family support programs.

“We value the success of military children and we’re committed to helping them thrive,” said Jennifer Silberman, Chief Sustainability Officer, Dollar Tree. “Supporting Operation Homefront’s Back-to-School Brigade® provides the opportunity for Dollar Tree and our shoppers to make a difference in the lives of military families across the country by donating school supplies.”

At the conclusion of this year’s program, Operation Homefront will have delivered 580,000 backpacks since the Back-to-School Brigade® program launched in 2008, saving military families more than $60 million.

Additional partners supporting Operation Homefront’s Back-to-School Brigade® at this year’s events nationally include CSX and Renewal by Anderson. For more information visit the Back-to-School Brigade® page.

About Operation Homefront: Operation Homefront is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to build strong, stable, and secure military families so that they can thrive – not simply struggle to get by – in the communities they have worked so hard to protect. Recognized for superior performance by leading independent charity oversight groups, 83 percent of Operation Homefront expenditures go directly to programs that support tens of thousands of military families each year. Operation Homefront provides critical financial assistance, transitional and permanent housing, and family support services to prevent short-term needs from turning into chronic, long-term struggles. Thanks to the generosity of our donors and the support from thousands of volunteers, Operation Homefront proudly serves America’s military families. For more information, visit OperationHomefront.org.

About Southern New Hampshire University: Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) is a private, nonprofit institution with a 91-year history of educating traditional-aged students and working adults. Now serving more than 200,000 learners worldwide, SNHU offers approximately 200 accredited undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs, available online and on its 300-acre campus in Manchester, NH. Recognized as one of the “Most Innovative” regional universities by U.S. News & World Report and one of the fastest-growing universities in the country, SNHU is committed to expanding access to high-quality, affordable pathways that meet the needs of each learner. Learn more at www.snhu.edu.

About Dollar Tree: Dollar Tree, a Fortune 200 Company, operated 16,397 stores across 48 states and five Canadian provinces as of May 4, 2024. Stores operate under the brands of Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, and Dollar Tree Canada. To learn more about the Company, visit www.DollarTree.com.

Media Inquiries:
Erin Burgy
Erin.Burgy@OperationHomefront.org
(469) 934-7131

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