School supplies

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Free School Supplies: Where to Look and How to Get Help

There are people ready to help
School supplies

Kolpakova Daria/Shutterstock

Pandemic-induced economic trouble and a new way of doing school have made for a stressful back-to-school season. Thankfully, there are a few groups ready to help if you are having a difficult time supplying all of your child’s school-year needs. So, where can you find free school supplies?

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If you’re in need of free school supplies, the first step you should take is to contact your child’s school or school district. They may have specific suggestions on groups and organizations that can help support you and your child. 

Secondly, look to large national organizations in your area. Groups like the Salvation Army, United Way and the Boys and Girls Club of America have local chapters ready to assist in making the back-to-school season as smooth as possible for your family.  Depending on your location, these groups may partner with smaller local clubs to host backpack and supply giveaways. 

Next, read up on smaller organizations and community groups in your area. These activist groups, religious communities or other clubs and centers might host their own supply giveaways or they can connect you with other groups that do. 

Finally, connect with trusted friends. Explain your situation and request a school supply swap. Trade any unnecessary supplies you have left over from last year for whatever they are willing to share. 


If even after attending a local giveaway you are still missing a few required items, there are 19 other ways to save money on school supplies.