Hilo, Thursday, July 14, 2011 – Chief Harry Kubojiri announced this week that the Hawaii Police Department, once again, will join in the community backpack drive to assist less-fortunate children in these hard economic times.

“All police stations around the island will double as drop-off points between July and September for those interested in helping children in need,” said Kubojiri.

“Backpacks have been identified as the most requested non-food item for charities in Hawaii. The donated backpacks will be distributed to children at women’s shelters, homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities around the Big Island.”

This is the third consecutive year the Police Department has worked in partnership with HOPE Services Hawai’i (formerly known as the Office of Social Ministry) and From Kids For Kids in the collection and distribution of these items.

Hope Services Hawai’i provides a continuum of homeless and transitional programs from outreach to emergency shelters, including permanent supportive housing placements.

From Kids For Kids was founded in 2006 by Big Island resident Nani Welch-Keliihoomalu, then 10, who took responsibility for distributing backpacks containing books, clothing, art and school supplies.

Kubojiri again has volunteered police stations as drop-off points to make it convenient for anyone who wishes to donate backpacks for the project.

“I humbly ask those of you who have backpacks your child is no longer using to consider donating them to this worthy cause,” Kubojiri said.

“I know that the continuing economic downturn across our nation affects all of us, but I also know that the aloha spirit is alive and well when it comes to opening our hearts and lending a helping hand.”

Staff writer. “Police help keiki backpack drive”Hawaii Tribune Herald, 14 July. 2011. http://www.hawaiitribune-herald.com/sections/news/community/police-help-keiki-backpack-drive.html