Get free school supplies or clothes by mail or home delivery.
There are charities and assistance programs that may deliver free school supplies by mail. The programs are not common, but they are possible. There may be volunteers that deliver items to the homebound or to a parent that lives in a rural area. Or it may be possible to get free back to school supplies, clothes, uniforms, electronics, and more by mail. Find more information below on how to apply for assistance and what options are available.
While it is possible in some situations to have items delivered, it is not common. School supplies are usually only offered in the mail to the (1) disabled (2) the homebound (3) parents who lack transportation or that work during the day (including single moms) or (4) low income families in rural areas that are not near any other free school supply giveaway program. The homebound may be someone who is disabled, ill, a senior citizen or grandparent caring for a student, or disabled person. They can often qualify for delivery of the school items their kids need.
Types of school items or clothing offered by mail or home delivery
Anyone that is interested can apply at charities or non-profits that may offer this service. The first option may be the Salvation Army. They offer assistance programs and social services year round, but many Family Service Centers do provide basic needs to students from low income families. This includes school supplies, free uniforms, food boxes, shoes, winter attire, notebooks, backpacks, and more.
If and when the Salvation Army provides free school supplies by mail, it is usually a volunteer driven service. They will not literally “mail” stuff to a family using USPS or Fed Ex. Instead the staff may bring supplies or school clothes in the mail to a very low income family or struggling one that does not have transportation. Clients of this service may not have a car or live near a bus route, or they have no way to get to a local Salvation Army center. When funding allows, they may also arrange for the client to get a Christmas gift via mail.
Another place that operates nationwide is Catholic Charities and their local church run affiliates. They cover both cities and rural area where millions of Americans live. Using both thrift stores and donation programs, students may get books, tablets, clothes, shoes, backpacks, and more. Many non-profits are a source too, which the United Way has information on. Agencies want to help children, whether in elementary, middle or high school, get the education (which includes school supplies for learning) they need, so the United Way gives contact information to organizations that may mail out school uniforms or other free supplies.
Where to apply for free back to school supplies or clothes in the mail
There are a few options as noted above, however the assistance is not very common. In fact, it is generally only offered in an extreme situation or some type of emergency. Not only are mail or delivery programs not common, but they are also seasonal in nature and have different application processes.
When an organization mails out school supplies for a student, applications will need to be done earlier and approved earlier in the season as well. This is done to account for the shipping or delivery of goods. However, note that in some cases a charity may deliver school supplies for free year round, as of course school runs most of the calendar year. However, this would also even be less common.
The charities, churches, and non-profits to try for help from a free mail or delivery service include back to school supply assistance programs from the Salvation Army, as they are the main source. There are also churches that often have items (clothes, shoes, writing material and more), and volunteers may deliver them to a member of the community.
Two other charities for school supplies by mail and related gear include St. Vincent de Paul as well as Catholic Charities. However the United Way school supply assistance programs are always a great place to learn about national and local resources and mailing services.