Dream Drive is where Supplies for Dreams began—a simple idea that makes a big difference. Since 87 percent of Chicago Public Schools (CPS) students come from low-income families, many do not have the means to purchase the basic school supplies that they need to begin their educational journeys. Dream Drive gathers funds and in-kind donations to equip students with pencils, notebooks, binders and other grade-appropriate learning tools that parents might not be able to afford otherwise. The goal is not only to donate backpacks full of supplies, but to lay a strong foundation for each student’s educational future.
Each year, SFD works with wholesale dealers to lower the cost of materials in order to support more students for less money. Then, each August after the supplies arrive, Dream Drive hosts Build-a-Backpack Day, an event where community volunteers assemble supply packages and backpacks to prepare them for delivery. Finally, SFD volunteers deliver the packages to each partner organization—whether that’s a school or a community center. These strategies ensure that Dream Drive funds are cost effectively used to provide as many students with supplies as possible.