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DHS News September 2012

A Gift for the New School Year

Backpack contentsCentiMark, an international commercial roofing and flooring company headquartered in Canonsburg, recently donated items to help youth involved with the Office of Children, Youth and Families (CYF) get their school year off to a great start.

Thanks to CentiMark’s generous donation, 500 local children living with their birth parents or caregivers received age-appropriate, gender-specific backpacks filled with pens, paper, scissors, glue, and various other school supplies. Additionally, each youth received a $25 or $50 gift card to Famous Footwear and a $100 gift card for either Target or Wal-Mart.

The gift was part of a larger donation that CentiMark made as part of their Centimark Cares “Back to School” program. In addition to the supplies given to CYF, CentiMark provided similar donations to other child-serving organizations in Allegheny County, helping nearly 4,000 kids get the school supplies that they need.

"At CentiMark, we are concerned about at-risk youth and seniors. Every child deserves a first day of school with new clothes, shoes and backpacks.  I have volunteered with children in foster care my entire adult life, so I know that the needs are great," said Kathy Slencak, manager of special events, CentiMark Foundation.

The youth were thrilled to receive the donations, and their caregivers were overwhelmed by the unexpected, generous donation. Many of the caregivers expressed that they may not have otherwise had the resources needed to purchase school supplies.

“I have been raising my 14 and 15 year old siblings since our mother passed away earlier this year. From the second she passed, we’ve been trying to rebuild everything with little financial support,” said Rachel, a caregiver for her two younger siblings. “I’m sure there are a lot of kids like my siblings who didn’t know how they would get their school supplies. This donation is amazing and I am so thankful.”

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