Operation: Back to School

Equip Chicago’s students with the tools they need to start the school year strong!

backpacks ready for our school-aged children

Fill a Backpack, Fuel a Future

Operation: Back to School, the Carole Robertson Center for Learning’s annual back-to-school supply drive, empowers our community’s children—one backpack at a time. On average, school supplies can cost anywhere from $700-1200 per school year, depending on the grade level. We’re counting on your support to provide more than 500 school-aged youth with high-quality essentials for the 2024-25 school year.

Whether you plan on donating, purchasing supplies off our registry, or signing up to volunteer, you’re giving our community’s families one less thing to worry about while ensuring local students can show up for the first day of school in style, excited, and ready to learn!

Ways to Get Involved

Amazon Gift Registry

View our supply wish list and purchase directly online!


We’re committed to setting our community’s children up for success—at school and beyond. No gift is too big or small!


Sign up to help prepare and distribute backpacks! Choose to volunteer for the site that is closest to you!

Supply List

Rather purchase on your own? Drop off any of the below supplies to our Administrative Offices located at:1111 S. Western Ave. Suite B., Chicago, IL. Supplies can be dropped off Monday – Thursday from 9am to 5pm.

Backpacks  Pens and Pencils  Pencil top erasers 
Pencil cases/supply boxes  Assignment Books  Spiral Notebooks 
Paper Notecards  Pocket folders  Glue sticks 
Scissors  Rulers  Highlighters 
Markers  Crayons  Colored Pencils 
Hand Sanitizer  KN95 Mask  Boxes of Tissues 
Lysol Wipes  Expo Markers and Erasers  Personal Dry Erase Boards 

Learn more by emailing our Development Team:


Since 1976, the Carole Robertson Center for Learning has been dedicated to educating, enriching, and empowering children and families through comprehensive child and family development programs.