More Than 1,800 Backpacks and School Supplies Donated Through The Cooper Foundation’s Operation Backpack
Learning in the age of COVID-19 presents many challenges to school systems, teachers, students and their families, but thanks to employees at Cooper University Health Care and The Cooper Foundation, 1,800 Camden students will not have to worry about school supplies. Whether in a school building or at home, students need supplies and backpacks, and Cooper employees and The Cooper Foundation were determined to make sure that a pandemic did not get in the way of this year’s Operation Backpack.
Cooper employees have been generously donating backpacks and supplies to Camden students for 10 years, and this year, Cooper donated 1,800 new backpacks filled with school supplies to each student at KIPP Cooper Norcross Academy Lanning Square, John Greenleaf Whittier Middle School and the new Sumner High School so that they have the necessary supplies to start a new year of learning.
“This school year will look a bit different, but The Cooper Foundation remains committed to supporting Camden students,” said George E. Norcross III, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Cooper University Health Care. “Now more than ever, children need to know that the community cares about them and wants them to be healthy and succeed.”
In years past, Cooper employees have come together to collect and donate new backpacks and school supplies for students in Camden. However, due to COVID-19, The Cooper Foundation was unable to accept physical donations, so employees found another way and made monetary gifts to support this effort.
“During this unique time when a pandemic has had such a big impact on our community, we are grateful for partners like The Cooper Foundation to be able to meet some of our students’ basic needs,” stated Drew Martin, Executive Director of KIPP Cooper Norcross Academy. “It’s important our scholars start the school year strong and we can continue to serve them at the highest levels.”
About The Cooper Foundation
The Cooper Foundation serves as the philanthropic, community outreach and community development arm of Cooper University Health Care, one of the largest health systems in southern New Jersey with over 100 outpatient offices and its flagship, Cooper University Hospital located in Camden, N.J.
About KIPP Cooper Norcross Academy
New Jersey’s first renaissance school, the KIPP Cooper Norcross Academy in Camden, N.J., was established under the state’s Urban Hope Act, which created a pilot program to provide students in three struggling school districts – Camden, Newark and Trenton – access to new, quality public schools in their communities. The Academy was created in partnership with KIPP, one of the most renowned, national networks of free, open-enrollment, college preparatory public charter schools; The Cooper Foundation, the charitable arm of Cooper University Health Care, and the Norcross Foundation. The new, 110,000-square-foot campus opened in 2015 and provides guaranteed enrollment for students in grades Pre-K through 8th living in the Lanning Square and Cooper Plaza neighborhoods. The Camden network opened its second middle school in August 2016 and a high school in 2020.
Wendy A. Marano
Public Relations Manager
Cooper University Health Care