BACK TO SCHOOL

Utah refugees need help with back to school supplies  

Jul 28, 2023, 6:57 PM | Updated: 7:35 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — Kids are getting ready to go back to school in just a few weeks and one thing experts emphasize: if kids feel secure at home, they’ll do better in the classroom. 

One group is hoping to create that confidence for students but needs your help.  

Everyday supplies–diapers, soaps, and detergents—things we might not think twice about, are the everyday supplies Osman Hassan lived without for 12 years. 

“Being a refugee, that’s the toughest life one can go through,” Hassan said.

From the refugee camps to Utah, Hassan arrived 20 years ago in the Beehive State and has since built his family of seven here. 

“I wish for them to live a better life and also contribute back to the community and help other refugees,” said Hassan. 

Part of giving his kids a better life is getting them to school.  

That’s where the Utah Refugee Connection comes in.  

Utah Refugee Connection was created to help refugees get the supplies and resources they couldn’t find on their own.  

Amy Dott, the executive director of Utah Refugee Connection, said they provide backpacks every year for refugees.  

“Last year we gave out 5,000 backpacks,” Dott said.  

All of those backpacks were full of supplies: crayons, pencils, notebooks, and binders, just to name a few.  

But Dott said she’s nervous about this year – they have less than 1,000 backpacks donated and their back-to-school day supply pick-up is just a few weeks away. 

“The goal is to give a backpack and these school supplies to build confidence for them starting the school year,” Dott said. 

A donation that provides confidence for the kids and community support for parents like Hassan.  

“I hope for them that they can have the real, American dream,” said Hassan.  

There is a donation drive on July 31 and August 2 at their Sharehouse in Salt Lake City. 

There are also different donation drop-off locations from St. George to Logan.  

Donation information can be found here.

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Utah refugees need help with back to school supplies