How You Can Help Us
Please know that the value of your monetary donation to BBP will far exceed its dollar amount in the lives of children served, and the value of your work on their behalf will transcend the number of hours you volunteer. We thank you in advance for your extraordinary generosity.
Brookings Back Pack Project is a 501 (c) 3 organization and operates under the Tax ID number 81-3314886.
Click a topic to learn how you can help us:
- Sponsor a Child
- Make a Memorial or Honorary Gift
- Take Action as a Family
- Take Action in Your School
- Take Action in Your Place of Worship
- Take Action in Your Workplace
- Recognize the Hungry Child (for School Staff and Teachers)
Please consider sponsoring one or more children in BBP. Here are the sponsorship amounts:
$0.50/week ($26/year) provides the funds for: A complete bag of weekend meals and snacks for approximately one child for 6 1/2 weeks.
$7.00/week ($364/year) provides the funds for: A complete bag of weekend meals and snacks for approximately one child for 1 and 3/4 years.
$15/week ($780 per year) provides the funds for: A complete bag of weekend meals and snacks for approximately one child for 3 and 3/4 years.
$25/week ($1300 per year) provides the funds for: A complete bag of weekend meals and snacks for approximately 325 children for one year.
Of course, donations in any amount are welcome. Contributions toward the purchase of basic office supplies (e.g., paper, stamps, ink), or donations of such items, would also be appreciated. See the Wish List.
Donation by check. Make your check payable to "Brookings Back Pack Project." Mail your contribution to BBP, PO Box 8054, Brookings, SD 57006.
Donation by Paypal. Click on the Paypal link on the sidebar of our website.
We gratefully accept donations to BBP in memory or in honor of a loved one, special friend or associate. To make such a donation, please download and complete our gift form, specifying the amount of your contribution, whether it's an honorary or a memorial gift, memorial_gift_form_-_2017.docx the individual who is being honored or remembered, and the name and address of the person to whom we should send an acknowledgment letter, notifying them of your thoughtfulness. Instructions for sending your gift to BBP are found on the form.
BBP was created by volunteers, and will only exist as long as volunteers are committed to the well-being of our community's children. We invite you to join the cause, the work, the joy, the caring.
- Pack food bags.
- Substitute to deliver food bags to school.
- Unpack groceries at the Staging Site to get them ready for putting into the bags.
- Share your expertise with technology, fundraising, public relations or other aspects of BBP's ongoing work.
To become a BBP volunteer connect with the helplinecenter.org. https://volunteer.helplinecenter.org/organization/0011600001wymmtAAA
Packing parties are usually held on Wednesday nights. We ask for packing parties of 10-15 individuals. We welcome anyone aged fourth-grade or older to participate. If youngsters will be packing, there should be one working adult to every three or four working children. The optimal mix for a single packing party involving youngsters would be three adults and ten children.
Please be aware that, due to the tremendous support from the community, our packing party calendar quickly fills up with volunteers. If you would like to be involved, contact us well in advance of any date you might wish to help pack. We will do our best to accommodate you.
Volunteers for Wednesday night packing parties can find directions to the BBP Staging Site on the Downloads & Links page.
We strongly encourage all children and their parents to become more aware of hunger in our community and to support BBP's efforts to address it.
Here are some suggestions for your family:
Volunteer together at a packing party. Children aged fourth-grade and older may now participate with adequate adult supervision.
Eat together. Make time for at least one meal each day as a family. Express gratitude for your food as well as concern for people who haven't enough.
Don't eat together. If appropriate for all members of your family, and if they agree to participate, schedule one mealtime at which the family foregoes eating in order to understand better what food-insecure people undergo on a regular basis. (Option: Instead of eliminating the meal altogether, the family could eat much less, and much less appetizing, food than usual.) While gathered at the empty table, reflect as a family on what it would feel like to be a child or an adult or a senior citizen who is constantly without sufficient food. Acknowledge the reasons why so many people around the world are in this position (e.g., lack of employment, financial emergency, war, drought, crop failures). Discuss what your family might do to help alleviate hunger locally.
Start a "BBP Change Jar." Have family members regularly drop their spare change (or a portion of their allowance) into a designated jar. At the end of each month, count the money and donate it to BBP. If $4 can provide one child with enough BBP food for one weekend, what can the money you collected do?
Host a special fundraising meal or potluck in your home. Invite guests to help fight hunger by donating to BBP.
Neighborhood competition. Pick a weekend day, print some BBP leaflets, and have groups of friends in different sections of town compete to see how much money (checks or cash) they can raise for BBP in their neighborhoods within two hours. You'll cover a lot of ground in no time and probably get a good work-out too.
Rake leaves or shovel snow. Help neighbors with yard work or odd jobs in exchange for BBP donations.
Have a bake sale, lemonade stand, or hot chocolate stand. Fight hunger by selling goodies and drinks and donating the money you make to BBP. Back to top
We strongly encourage students of all ages to become more aware of hunger in our community and BBP's efforts to address it. Children and youth in the local school district who are aged fourth-grade or older can volunteer for BBP packing parties. University students are also welcome.
Below are some other suggestions on how public school students may get involved with BBP. University students may adapt these ideas for campus use or come up with their own. They are also encouraged to involve their sorority, fraternity or other campus group, or to check into doing an individual Service Learning Project with BBP. If you're a member of the university community and have an interest in somehow supporting BBP, please firstname.lastname@example.org us or call 605-692-2965.
Ideas for public school students:
Arrange with school officials to put "BBP Change Jars" in classrooms and school offices. Students, teachers and staff can drop spare change into the jars to raise money for BBP. Or, set up a competition between different classes or grades within your school, or different schools within the Brookings district, to see who collects the most money for BBP during a certain time period. When the contest ends, count the money. If $208 can provide one child with enough BBP food for one weekend for the entire school year, how many children will be fed with the total funds raised?
Start a "BBP Cool Club" at your school. Your student organization can help raise awareness of local, national and global hunger while finding ways to support BBP. Caring is cool!
- Design, produce, sell and wear a BBP button or t-shirt.
- Hold a silent or live auction, raffle, or rummage sale.
- Sponsor a car wash, book sale, bake sale or craft/holiday gift fair.
- Set up a dunk tank and get your favorite teacher or school administrator wet for a BBP donation.
- Sell ice cream treats during lunch time, proceeds benefiting BBP.
- Ask Kiwanis or Rotary or another civic organization to match the amount raised by your school's BBP fundraiser.
Compose and send a letter informing your neighbors, friends and family about BBP and inviting them to help you raise funds. Back to top
BBP invites individuals (fourth-grade and up) and groups from houses of worship to volunteer for packing parties or to help us in other capacities. We also encourage activities that raise awareness of local, national and global hunger and that inspire persons of faith to respond with compassion. Finally, we always appreciate help with fundraising.
We also invite local churches to pick a month and gather donations of certain items for that month to be donated to the Back Pack Project. For more information, contact us at 605-651-3900.
Most of the awareness-building and fundraising ideas already listed in the "Take Action" sections above will also work for your house of worship. In addition, we wish to provide some excellent children's activities provided by Hunger No More, an educational arm of Bread for the World. Though intended for children in Christian congregations, these materials could easily be adapted for use within other faith communities.
BBP invites individuals and groups from area workplaces to volunteer for packing parties or to help us in other capacities. We also appreciate help with fundraising. Here are some fundraising ideas:
Start a "BBP Change Jar". Invite colleagues to drop their spare change into a designated jar. At the end of each month, count the money and donate it to BBP. If $6 can provide one child with enough BBP food for one weekend, what can the money you collected do?
Donate your lunch money. Eat-in one day a week at work and give the lunch money you save to BBP. One day's lunch might feed a child for an entire weekend.
Use your employer's matching gift program. Many employers will match employee donations. Ask your Human Resources department to assist you.
Transform the party. Want a fun way to motivate your employees to work together for the common good? Join a growing trend by donating the funds you would have spent on a party to BBP.
Become a corporate partner of BBP. We accept financial support from companies of all sizes. Make an outright donation. Set up a business-wide fundraiser. Steer employees to our Virtual Food Drive. Have various departments compete to raise the most money with BBP Change Jars. The possibilities are endless!
Contribute in-kind donations. BBP is always grateful to receive printing and copying services, stamps, copier paper, and other essential items from local businesses.
If you have an interest in supporting BBP through your workplace, please contact us at email@example.com or call 605-692-2965.
You who work so diligently in the Brookings schools are probably already doing this, but please be alert to the signs of a hungry child (see brief list below). If you suspect that a student is at risk of hunger, please contact your school's counselor right away.
Signs of Hunger and/or Malnutrition
- Rushing the cafeteria line or a snack line
- Acting extremely hungry on Monday mornings or after a school break
- Saving, hoarding or stealing food to eat later
- Quickly eating food and asking for more
- Commenting on food scarcity in their home
- Having difficulty paying attention or concentrating on work, slow reaction times
- Exhibiting such physical symptoms as lack of energy, fatigue, dizziness, routine illness due to poor immune function, stomachache, headache, tooth decay, low body weight, muscle weakness, frailness
- Anxiety, depression, moodiness Back to top