Friends of Karen Launches 2011 Back-to-School Program, Children's Charity Wants to Fill 600 Backpacks This Year

It may be beach weather, but Friends of Karen is hard at work to fill 600 back-to-school backpacks for children with cancer and their siblings.

Purdys, NY, July 15, 2011 --( Children’s Charity Needs Help Filling 600 Backpacks This Year

Remember the great feeling of heading back to school in a new outfit, with new notebooks and pencils and a new bookbag to put them in? Even though summer is just getting started for most people, Friends of Karen’s Back-to-School program already is in high gear. The charity aims to put supplies-stuffed backpacks and clothing gift cards in the hands and smiles on the faces of over 600 critically-ill children and their siblings this September.

“Imagine going into a store and seeing happy, healthy children choosing school supplies and clothing while your own child is in the hospital with a life-threatening illness, or having to decide whether to buy a backpack and new school shoes for your ‘well’ child or paying for medicine for your sick child,” says Denise Tredwell, Volunteer Coordinator at Friends of Karen. “These are very real situations for the families we’re caring for, and we step in to help so that they don’t have to make these impossible choices.”

Friends of Karen needs gifts of new backpacks, totes and messenger bags and school supplies including marble notebooks, 2-pocket folders, pens and pencils, pencil sharpeners, pink erasers, glue sticks, washable markers, and construction paper. Gift cards to Macy’s, Sear’s, JC Penney, Old Navy, Gap and Target are needed. If you can donate any of these back-to-school supplies or gift cards, or if you prefer to make a cash donation, please contact Denise Tredwell at or 914-617-4052.

Friends of Karen is the only organization that provides emotional, financial and advocacy support to families of a child with cancer or another life-threatening illness, from diagnosis through treatment. Since 1978, we have touched the lives of over 10,000 children in the New York Metro region. With compassion, dedication and expertise, Friends of Karen helps the entire family during an overwhelmingly frightening and turbulent time. We know the phone calls to make, the people to contact, the way through the ordeal to keep the family together and strong. Friends of Karen serves all qualified families without regard to race, religion, or national origin. To find out more about what we do, visit

Friends of Karen
Lisa Dashman