Media Release: Britepaths’ Back to School Program Seeks Donations to Provide Supplies and Backpacks to 2,500 Fairfax Area Students

$25 Donation Provides Backpack and Supply Kit to a Student; Opportunities Also Available to Sponsor or Cosponsor a Partner School in Fairfax High School or Justice High School Pyramids

 Lisa Whetzel,, 703.273.8829

FAIRFAX, VA (July 17, 2023) – Fairfax-based nonprofit Britepaths is seeking community support to assist 2,500 students who attend schools in the Fairfax County area and may otherwise go without supplies.

Financial donations to Britepaths’ Back to School Program through August 31 will allow the organization to purchase new school supply kits and backpacks that school staff will distribute to 2,500 students with identified need at partner schools that are mostly in Fairfax County Public Schools’ (FCPS) Fairfax High School and Justice High School pyramids.

Through a partnership with Herndon-based Campus Survival Kits, Britepaths can maximize cash donations to purchase all the necessary supplies and high quality backpacks at a steep discount. A donation of $25 will provide the needed supplies and a backpack for one student. Organizations may also choose to sponsor or cosponsor all students at a specific partner school.

Community members may donate funds or register to sponsor a school via Britepaths’ secure on-line donation page at: Checks should be made out to Britepaths and mailed to 3959 Pender Drive, Suite 200, Fairfax, VA 22030. Write “BTS23” in the memo line. For more information, phone 703.273.8829 or email

Britepaths is grateful to PenFed Credit Union, sponsoring students at Daniels Run Elementary School; Jim McKay Chevrolet, sponsoring students at Willow Springs Elementary School; the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Fairfax, cosponsoring students at Bailey’s Upper Elementary School; and to the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia/Avalon Charitable Fund, which provided a generous grant to support the program.

Lisa Whetzel, Britepaths’ Executive Director, said, “It is incredible to think about the fact that Fairfax County is one of the five wealthiest counties in the country, and yet, one in 14 children in our community lives in poverty. For the families of students at our partner schools who are having trouble paying rent and putting food on the table, the prospect of finding funds to purchase school supplies is stressful.”

“Community members who sponsor students in our Back to School campaign are doing so much more than providing supplies and backpacks,” Whetzel added. “They’re helping young people whose lives can be stressful start off the school year with confidence, dignity and the tools they need to succeed.”

Kathy McKay, President of Jim McKay Chevrolet, said, “Our personal connections to Willow Springs Elementary School and knowledge of the work that Britepaths does made it an easy decision to become a sponsor for Britepaths’ Back to School program. We hope the community will join us in supporting this effort to ensure that students are ready to learn at the start of the school year.”

Britepaths’ Back to School FCPS Partner Schools:

Fairfax High School Pyramid

  • Daniels Run ES
  • Eagle View ES
  • Fairfax HS
  • Fairfax Adult HS
  • Providence ES
  • Willow Springs ES

Justice High School Pyramid

  • Bailey’s Upper ES
  • Glen Forest ES
  • Justice HS


  • Lewis HS

About Britepaths

In 2024, Britepaths will celebrate 40 years of providing help, hope, and a path forward for Fairfax County and Northern Virginia residents experiencing a financial crisis. In Fiscal Year 2023, the organization served 7,999 households, impacting the lives of 11,555 people. Throughout the year, the organization relies on funding and volunteer support from businesses, individuals, community organizations and faith communities to provide services that: Stabilize Families with supplemental food and financial assistance; foster Personal Empowerment through financial education and workforce development coaching and IT training. Britepaths’ Supports for Children includes Back to School partnerships, Food4Thought weekend food kits, and Holiday program, helping thousands of children year-round. More information is available at:


Britepaths Back to School partner Jim McKay Chevrolet
Photo Information: Jim McKay Chevrolet donated funds to Britepaths’ 2023 Back to School program to sponsor all the needed supply kits and backpacks for students at Willow Springs Elementary School. Britepaths staff met with President Kathy McKay on July 13 to celebrate the partnership.

In the Photo (left to right): Britepaths Community Development Manager Harper Garcia and Programs Manager Brenda Hernandez, Jim McKay Chevrolet President Kathy McKay and Britepaths Executive Director Lisa Whetzel at Jim McKay Chevrolet in Fairfax. Photo by Abra Kurt, Britepaths
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