The Human Services Council Inc., in partnership with the Department of Health and Social Services, is seeking individuals, businesses and organizations to help provide backpacks, school supplies and gift cards to support families who cannot afford to purchase uniforms, for the state’s children living in poverty or in low-income households.

“It’s critically important that Delaware’s kids are prepared to learn on the first day of school — and we can all help make sure that’s the case,” said Gov. John Carney. “The Adopt-A-Student program through the Department of Health and Social Services offers children from low-income households the opportunity to get school supplies and uniforms they will need to be ready for that first day. I urge Delawareans to donate to Adopt-A-Student so our students can take that next step toward success.”

Designed to encourage a positive attitude toward school by helping with the supplies students need to achieve success, Adopt-A-Student accepts backpacks and school supply donations, as well as $50 gift cards to retail stores that carry school uniforms such as Forman Mills, Kmart, Rainbow and Walmart.

In 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 12 percent of Delawareans lived below the poverty line.

To “adopt” a student or make a donation, contact the closest Adopt-A-Family office:

— New Castle County: 792-6510 or Donation hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.

— Kent and Sussex counties: 424-7260 or Donation hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.

Any donor who needs to drop-off outside of these hours may call either office for an accommodation.

Adopt-A-Family accepts financial and in-kind donations. Donations are tax deductible. Checks can be made payable to Adopt-A-Family and mailed to either 3301 Green St., Claymont, DE 19703; or 13 SW Front St., Milford, DE 19963.

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