Human InterestThe White Plains Examiner

Councilwoman Puja Spearheads Backpack Drive in White Plains

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When White Plains Councilwoman Jennifer Puja kicked off a backpack drive this summer to benefit students in the city, her goal was to collect 100 backpacks.

However, Puja’s grassroots effort grew quickly as neighbors, friends and family members turned out to help children in pre-k through high school.

Partnering with the Salvation Army White Plains Corps and El Centro Hispano, Puja was able to accumulate 200 new backpacks that were recently distributed to students.

There were so many backpacks that students were able to select their favorite color, style or pattern.

“Seeing the excitement on their faces when choosing their backpack made my heart full,” Puja said. “I loved the variety collected and being able to provide a shopping experience to students where they could choose what best fit their needs and wants was gratifying.”

Puja, who was the youngest female ever elected to the council in 2019 and is seeking a new four-year term in November, thanked the community for its generosity and support.

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