School Supply Drive


Moneytalk is working as one of the community partners, through Caring for Kids KC, to help two Title 1 elementary schools.  The community partners are working to ensure the students have the school supplies they need to start the school year – whether that be on-site, at-home, or a combination.

The vast majority of students at these schools receive Free or Reduced Lunches due to their low income.   Nieman elementary has 64% and Shawanoe elementary has 78.4% of their students on Free & Reduced Lunches.

In “normal” years, many of these families must choose between buying school supplies or shoes for their children.  They make decisions between putting food on the table, paying rent, and keeping the lights on.

Now, after COVID-19, these families, and many more, are struggling worse than ever.  Many will have their utilities turned off as disconnection restrictions are lifted.  Many will find themselves homeless as eviction restrictions are lifted. 

How can we expect these families to be able to afford school supplies for their children?  Let’s ensure all of the students have a positive start to the school year.


$50 per student

x 1,000 students


$50,000 total


$14,419.78 for Nieman Elementary 469 students

$21,723.00 for Shawanoe Elementary 590 students


$38,142.78 is our actual total cost.

How did we do this?

We were able to get all of the needed backpacks and supplies for 24% less than our estimated budget! 

  • One big change was  when the schools approved ordering the  Creative Colors brand instead of Crayola for items such as crayons, colored pencils, & markers.  This was not only a less expensive brand, but allowed us to purchase through Group Sales at a discounted rate.
  • Another change to the original plan was by purchasing bulk size Ziploc bags.  Instead of purchasing individual small boxes of Ziploc gallon, quart, & sandwich bags, we were able to purchase 250 and 500 count bulk size packs for each size.

Next Year:

The schools would like to do this again next year!  So, we have an opportunity to make even more improvements.  Some ideas include:

  • Similar to the Ziploc bags, we could purchase gallon containers of hand sanitizer instead of individual bottles to turn in.  We could do something similar with boxes of facial tissue, paper towels, etc.
  • Simplify the packing process by only including the quantity of each item that the students keeps.  For example, students probably only keep 1 or 2 pencils and turn the rest into the teacher, so we would only pack 1 or 2 into their backpack and give the rest to the teachers.
  • We may also be able to spread out some of the purchases to help with the cash flow needs such as purchasing more facial tissue, hand sanitizer, paper towels, etc as the teachers need them.


Money Raised: $10,790

Remaining funds needed:  $30,452.78

Benefiting Schools:

Nieman Elementary School

Shawanoe Elementary School

Families in Need:

Grandmother caring for her husband, daughter,  and 7 grandchildren in a 3 bedroom home on a fixed income need our help!

I am a grandma that has adopted 3 of my grandkids. I have one in high school one in middle school and another in elementary school. They have health and learning disabilities. They have a lot of needs. We are retired and live on a fixed income. My husband has dementia and has a lot of medical expenses.  She and her husband have decided to skip purchasing the needed diabetic supplies and medicine so that they can purchase medication and therapies for their adopted grandchildren, clothes, and school supplies.  She stated they often wonder where their next meal is coming from.   So to get help for school supplies would be greatly appreciated and a relief to our family situation.

Student Pick Up:

Backpack distribution went well.

We are told by the teachers and staff that many of the students were shedding tears of gratitude and surprise at the huge blessing of a new backpack and all the school supplies they need.  Everyone gets to start the school year off on equal footing – as least as far as school supplies are concerned!  Thank you all for being a part of blessing these students, their families, and the schools.

How does the fundraiser benefit the school, students, teachers, and staff:

The intention of the fundraiser is to provide:

  • Each student with a new backpack and their school supplies for the 2020-2021 school year
  • Needed PPE for each student, teacher, and staff
  • Additional supplies will be used to fill backpacks for those who enroll later in the school year.

In the news:

The Shawnee Mission Post reported on the School Supply Fundraiser on July 1st.

The Shawnee Mission Post reported an update on the School Supply Fundraiser on Aug 26th.

Borrowed Space:

Project Working Location:

Monterey Office Park

12510 W 62nd Terr, Ste 109

Shawnee, KS 66216

Monterey Office Park - Suite 109

What’s Next:

Volunteer Survey – If you volunteered, please complete the survey.  Let us know what worked well, what we can improve, and any other thoughts you would like to share.

Sign Up for Next Year – Let us know if you want to help out next year.  The schools have already indicated they would love to be able to bless these families next year also.

Read the testimonials received from parents, teachers, staff, volunteers, and parents.

Donations & Sponsors

  • New City Church (a community partner) – $3,000
  • Arvest Bank – $2,500
  • Mike & Donna Egan – $1,000
  • Simmons Bank – $1,000
  • Lenexa Optimist Club – $500
  • ANB Bank – $500
  • Bill & Patti O’Neill – $500
  • Central Bank of the Midwest – $500
  • Nieman PTA – $300
  • Christian Brothers Automotive in Shawnee – Charity of the Month Fundraiser – $160
  • Terry & Kathy Houlton – $100
  • Erin Vertz – $100
  • Bob Jarred – $100
  • Brady & Paula Mattison – $100
  • Michael & Teresa McGarry – $100
  • Chrysalyn Huff – $100
  • Carla Walter-Clifton – $75
  • Regina Mallory – $50
  • Alan and Sherry Ettinger = $30
  • Alicia Weatherstrand – $25
  • Ray Erlichman – $25
  • Anonymous – $25

We anticipate $600 or a little more in donation from the KS Speedway Hollywood Casino 400 race’s concession stand fundraiser on Oct 18th.  The KS Speedway was sold out at 10,000 seats (about 1/5 of their non-covid capacity).  Also, we have very cold temperatures that day, which made for an enormous number of hot chocolate and coffee sales.  We should know for sure in 4-6 weeks.  A HUGE thank you to the 6 volunteers who spent the day in the cold working the concession stand!

Lots of ways to donate:

Donations for the fundraiser can be made directly on this site, GoFundMe Charity, Paypal Giving Fund, Venmo, or by mail.

1Your Information
2Donation Information

Donate through GoFundMe Charity campaign.  There are no platform fees.  The transaction fee is 1.9% + $0.30.

Postal mail is always an option:

Attn:  School Supply

PO Box 860184

Shawnee, KS 66286

Use PayPal to donate to Moneytalk.  PayPal Giving Fund covers all platform fees.  The transaction fee is 2.2% + $0.30.

Donate through Venmo.  There are no platform fees.  The transaction fee is 3% for credit cards.  There is no fee when a Venmo balance, bank account, or debit card is used.


  • Username = moneytalkff
  • Email =