Donations Sought For Back-to-School Gift Card Program


The doors to schools in New Trier Township will be opening soon and parents and children are scurrying to shop the "back to school" supply list. According to the National Retail Federation's annual survey, this year families will spend an average of about $600 on back-to-school shopping for apparel, school supplies and electronics.
For kids it’s an exciting annual rite but for parents it can be a moment they bemoan, especially if the family is on a tight budget, notes New Trier Township Social Services Administrator Jeanne Winsted Rosser. "While some parents will make children scour their closets before agreeing to buy any new jeans or backpacks, purchasing needed school supplies, which sometimes include calculators costing more than $100, can sink the budget for some families," she adds. To aid families who may be struggling financially, New Trier Township offers a Back-to-School gift card program to help offset the costs of needed supplies.
"As the economy has worsened we have seen a significant increase in the number of students in New Trier Township who are in economic need and qualify for this program," said Supervisor Patricia Cantor.  In 2009 the Township was able to provide 144 students with assistance; the number of eligible students has increased to 500 this year. 
"Each year we put out a plea to help fund this program with donations and have been able to meet the need through the generosity of individuals and organizations within the Township," she added. The funding for the program is through the New Trier Township Angel Fund, a registered 501(C) 3 organization supported solely by donations from individuals and organizations. Recipients have been qualified and meet financial and non-financial eligibility requirements.
"We oftentimes hear that in our affluent communities there can’t be people struggling to make ends meet, but in the day-to-day operation of our office we know there is a real problem and that there are neighbors amongst us who are in need of our compassion and support," said Cantor. "While the role of Township government is to provide a safety net to help people get back on their feet through government funded financial assistance programs, we can enhance our ability to help our neighbors in need with programs such as the Back to School Gift Card program that involve direct community participation through their financial support."
To make a donation to the Angel Fund, donors can download a form on-line or mail a check to: New Trier Township Angel Fund, 739 Elm Street, Winnetka, Illinois 60093. 
About New Trier Township
New Trier Township’s mission is to provide leadership, advocacy and resources to benefit the physical, mental and social-well being of Township residents.  Established in 1850, New Trier Township government serves the 56,000 residents in the villages of Wilmette, Kenilworth, Winnetka, and Glencoe, plus portions of Glenview and Northfield. The Township Office is located at 739 Elm Street in Winnetka or on-line at

739 Elm Street, Winnetka, Illinois 60093 P. (847) 446-8202 F. (847) 446-1743
© New Trier Twonship. All Rights Reserved.