50 Hampton Roads Students Become Backpack Ready for School

August 22, 2018

The 2017 Huntington Backpack Index, an annual survey of the cost of school supplies and other related expenses, showed the average parent will pay about $660 for a child in elementary school, $1,000 for a child in middle school, and about $1,500 for a child in high school this year. Those numbers are staggering, especially for children who come from lower income households.

As we continue our 50th anniversary celebration, we are honored to help K-12 students and families who are homeless prepare for a successful school year. On August 20, our company donated 50 “school-ready” backpacks to ForKids’ back-to-school drive. The backpacks were all filled with the supplies each child needed to start school. These donations are part of our long-standing commitment to helping level the educational playing field so that all Hampton Roads students have the opportunity to succeed.

“It’s important to us to help those in need, not just because we’re all part of the Hampton Roads community, but because we believe every child should be equipped to succeed,” said Helen Dragas, President and CEO of The Dragas Companies. “Having supplies that most of us take for granted can make an incredible difference to a child who has already experienced so much uncertainty.”

The backpacks we provided were packed with donations from Dragas’ employees. Each was filled with school necessities that will help set the children up for success from day one, including binders, scientific calculators, loose-leaf paper, as well as writing and coloring utensils. We recognize that each year the school supply list grows and families struggle to keep up. This year, we hope to make a huge difference in the lives of the 50 families of children receiving backpacks through an abundance of supplies!

“Families living in poverty have no space in their household budgets for school supplies,” said Thaler McCormick, CEO of ForKids. “We want all children to feel confident and look forward to school, rather than worry about whether they have what they need during class. Every year, we are blown away by the generosity of this community and by our partners like The Dragas Companies.”

Follow our journey as we celebrate our anniversary year with Hampton Roads! Join in on our blog, Facebook and Instagram. For more information on The Dragas Companies and our new home communities throughout Hampton Roads, visit

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