Backpack Program

Updated 06/24/21


The Backpack Program was established in Fall of 2011 by the Youth Advisory Council (YAC) with a grant from The Prat Northam Foundation. The program continues to be supported through donations from our local community, including but not limited to: local businesses, community residents, and CCS staff , students and their families. Over the years the program has been run by many different groups. The backpacks are currently being packed and delivered by the Student Council.

Why & How it Works

We understand that the current times are financially stressful for many families. The backpack program provides children in our district with nutritious food each weekend and on school vacations to help families make their food stretch farther during the month.

Every Friday, "backpacks" are filled with nutritious non-perishable foods that the participating students take home to their families. All items will be sent home in a durable paper bag, rather than the traditional backpacks. These bags do not need to be returned!

Enrollment & Eligibility

During the 2020 - 2021 School Year the Backpack Program served 13 families; 26 students.

To enroll please complete the application below and return to school. Enrollment is open throughout the entire school year. ALL families qualify! All we ask is that you complete a Free/Reduced Lunch Application. You do NOT have to qualify for Free/Reduced Lunch in order to receive a "backpack". The Backpack Program is a CONFIDENTIAL program.

If you have any questions about the program please contact Mrs. Bartlett, K- 12 Social Worker.

Phone: (315) 688-4411



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Local Food Resources

The backpack program does not run during the summer months. If you and your family are in need of food assistance during that time and/or other times throughout the year please visit one of the following local food pantries.

Jefferson County:

Watertown Urban Mission

The Watertown Urban Mission is continuing to serve Jefferson County residents through the Food Pantry Monday-Friday from 9:30 to 4:00, and Saturday from 9:30-1:30. The food pantry is open to all Jefferson County Residents, but if you are outside of the county lines and you find you have a need, please call 315.782.8440.


The Carthage Food Pantry is located at 495 S. Washington Street. The hours are Monday 9:00a - 12:00p and Friday 12:00p - 4:00p. At this time only one person is permitted inside the pantry at this time. For questions please call 315.493.1341.

Lewis County:


The Lowville Food Pantry site is located at 7646 Forrest Ave. They do not have open hours during this Covid-19 crisis time. You must call 315.376.7431 to schedule a time for pick up. More information may also be found here.


St. Mary’s Church in Copenhagen is open the 3rd Wednesday of each month between 4:30pm and 6:30pm. You may stop in for assistance during those times.

Pantry hours are subject to change. (Updated 12/2020)


The Backpack Program is always accepting donations!

We will gladly accept any cash, check (made out to CCS Backpack Program), or food donations.

Donations can be dropped off to Mrs. Gaines in the Attendance Office. There are no food bins out at the building entrances as we have in other years until further notice. Thank you for your understanding!

The program always accepts any non-perishable, unexpired foods such as:

Instant Oatmeal (Packets)

Cereal (boxes)

Granola Bars & Pop Tarts

Pancake Mix


Peanut Butter (plastic jars)

Jelly (plastic jars)


Canned Fruit

Canned Soup: Tomato, Chicken Noodle, Chili

Ramen Noodles

Tuna fish

Canned Chicken

Canned Vegetables

Mashed Potato (box or bag)

Macaroni and Cheese


Canned Spaghetti Sauce

Rice (boxes)

Bagged Entree's: Rice-A-Roni, Pasta Sides, etc.

Canned Entree's: Spaghetti-O's, Ravioli, etc.

Snack Items: Graham Crackers, Peanut Butter Crackers, Popcorn, Fruit Snacks, Pudding Cups, Fruit Cups etc.