Backpacks for FOCO is a project that was started here at Hillel last year. It is a project dedicated to collecting Backpacks, camping goods, clothes, jackets, sweaters, blankets, personal hygiene items, feminine hygiene products and truly anything that could help a homeless person or family on the street. This project is geared toward letting people give back by simply looking in the back of their closet for excess goods and supplies. If one cannot donate to the website or in person, used goods are more than acceptable and welcomed as this aspect of the project allows everyone to be a part of it.
This year our partners so far are Chabad, AEPI, SAEPI, LuMin and Congregation Har Shalom. We are also partnered with Homeward Alliance and the Murphy Center on this project. Donation dates are from November 7th to December 7th . The donation centers will be located at Hillel, Chabad, Har Shalom, and LuMin Church. Each organization will have a space dedicated to collecting small and large donations of goods and clothes.
We will kickoff collections this year at the 5th Annual Interfaith Friendsgiving:
CSU’s 5th Annual Interfaith Friendsgiving Celebration
Everyday Joe’s Coffee House, 144 S. Mason St. Fort Collins
Wednesday, November 7th, 6:00–8:00pm
The event for distributing the backpacks will occur during Chanukah on December 8th after Shabbat ends, which is also Homeless Awareness Day in Fort Collins at the Murphy Center. Backpacks, as well as Matzo Ball soup and cookies, will be distributed to those that come to this event. Although the main goal of this project is to focus on getting proper help and gear to the homeless community of Fort Collins, we also have the intention to unite all the different religious communities in town. I feel this project can sufficiently provide an outlet for the Fort Collins community to unite and give back for a common cause while examining the waste and excess we may have in our lives. In a world filled with polarization, pain, and suffering, we have a responsibility. We have a responsibility as humans, as Jews, as Christians, as Muslims, and others to unite in what makes all of us special, love. We have a responsibility to love ourselves and unite our communities so that we can give our most authentic and kind versions of ourselves to the world. I look forward to the future of this project and all its future partners. Let’s give back and unite Fort Collins.
Alex Kaye, CSU Hillel Philanthropy Chair