From The Heart to host school supply giveaway

backpack giveaway
From the Heart’s backpack giveaway will move from the Hamilton High School gym to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Anza for a drive-thru event due to the coronavirus pandemic. Anza Valley Outlook/Courtesy photo

Not even a pandemic can prevent the annual From the Heart backpack giveaway from taking place in Anza. The event supplies local schoolchildren with new backpacks, shoes, socks and school supplies.

The free drive-up event will be held Saturday, Aug. 15, at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 39075 Contraras Road, in Anza from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

From The Heart Christian Women’s Ministries held rummage sales and fundraising events, accepted donations and planned for weeks to ensure that the children would have new things to begin the school year.

At this time, Hemet Unified School District schools are deploying online distance learning, but the children still need pens, paper, crayons and art supplies and a backpack in which to stash it all.

Event organizer Christina James said, “The shoe area will have only two families at a time, and masks must be worn and social distancing is necessary. If needed, we will have masks available. Also, please, no smoking on the property, as requested by the LDS church. We are so grateful that they have offered the space.”

Many charitable organizations, businesses and individuals contribute to the success of the yearly affair, held the week before school begins.

“We are so blessed to still be able to have the backpack event,” James said. “We didn’t know what it was going to look like or where we would have it at first. There were a few planning meetings, and everything just fell into place. Ideas were thrown around, and a plan was formed. This year is definitely different and has challenges, but we knew that no matter what, God had us covered, and we would still be able to make sure the kids had what they needed. We are grateful again to the many groups and individuals that have been so supportive. We couldn’t do this without each and every one of you. It truly does take a village, and we have an awesome one.”

From The Heart Christian Women’s Ministries serves and focuses on families and children in need in the mountain communities of Anza, Aguanga, Mountain Center and Idyllwild. Fundraising events are held throughout the year to help collect money to aid the cause, such as rummage sales, luncheons, raffles and the annual From the Heart’s Holiday dinner.

For more information, find them on Facebook or write to: From The Heart Christian Women’s Ministries, P.O. Box 391224, Anza, CA 92539.

Diane Sieker can be reached by email at