DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) —The Mad River School District, Hope4Riverside and Crayons to Classrooms are back with their annual Back to School Supply Drive. The groups collect, pack, and distribute more than 1,000 backpacks with school supplies and bags of fresh produce to the district’s students.

Families converged at Beverly Gardens Elementary, Overlook Homes Community Center, and Mad River Middle School to pick up their free bookbags and produce on Friday. 

Crayons to Classrooms, a local non-profit organization, donated the bookbags and Hope4Riverside, a local group of pastors in Riverside, donated school supplies for the bags.

Mad River Local Schools Superintendent, Chad Wyen, says these community partnerships are key to the event’s yearly success.

Organizers say they start collecting supplies during the first week of August for the annual supply drive. 

Riverside Mayor, Pete Williams, says it takes a lot of support to offer this much help to students each year.

“That’s the thing that I’m very proud of and very impressed by every year is the number of folks who donate to this endeavor. So, being able to walk in day one with all of our students in this district fully equipped for a successful year is a is a phenomenal goal to have. And we’re able to meet that goal because of the number of churches, organizations, the school district, the city that all lend a hand in making that happen,” said Williams. 

The first day of school for the Mad River School District is Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2023.