For the 13th year running, the Estonian Association of Large Families (Eesti Lasterikaste Perede Liit) has been running the "Kids to School" (Lapsed Kooli) campaign, whereby people are able to donate school supplies to families with children in need. Collections took place during the second and third weekends of August in supermarkets across Estonia.
Aage Õunap, the association's president, said that the most popular items people donated this year were folders and notebooks and that they had also received a large amount of stationery items including pencils, crayons and felt-tip pens.
"These are the most popular things people donate," said Õunap. "The biggest collection this year was in Viimsi, where nearly 2,700 school supplies were collected. This was followed by Tartu's Veeriku Selver, which collected 2,300 items, and Laagri Selver, which collected 2,200," Õunap said.
The items families are most in need of ahead of the new school year are high quality school bags and pens.
"School bags are quite pricey and buying bags for several children is a pretty large expense," explained Õunap. "One schoolbag is also a big contribution from a single donor. It's always the bigger and more expensive school supplies, like pens, that we're missing" she said, admitting that the number of school supplies donated to the 2022 campaign was down slightly compared to in previous years.
"Although people are going through a difficult time and have had a very hard year, it's probably not going to get any easier in the fall. Despite that, it is clear that people still have the will and desire to contribute and donate. For that we are extremely grateful," she said.
Editor: Michael Cole