The United Way of Western Connecticut has announced the wrap-up its 26th annual Back-To-School Program, which served 374 greater New Milford students and represents an investment of $75,000 into the Southern Litchfield County community.

Individuals and corporations in the community helped UWWC program continue to help children from struggling families start the new school year on a positive note with a new backpack filled with school supplies, toiletry items and a gift card for clothing purchases.

The program is one of United Way’s signature initiatives that helps children from Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) households and alleviates a very real strain for families living paycheck-to-paycheck.

Volunteers Tammy Bass, Patti Blonski, Joan Conn, Susan Denino, Jeanne Faure, Tricia Gregory, Nancy Macklin, Jill Mullany, Alexandra O’Brien, Mike Scofield, Zina Smith, the Youth Volunteer Corps of Western Connecticut and Chris Thorndike, Luka Lugori and James Coffey from New Milford’s Boy Scout Troop 66 provided organizational and logistical support.

The success of this program would not have been possible without the support of private individual donors, foundations and corporations, including Kimberly-Clark, Unilever, Ultra Pure LLC and Dental Associates.

“The children exude pure excitement when they come in to pick up their backpacks,” said Kimberly Morgan, UWWC Chief Executive Officer.

“Their enthusiasm for the new school year is fueled by being fully prepared with all the materials they need, allowing them to start the school year with confidence,” she said.

“Our Back-To-School Program addresses a real financial concern for their families and a little extra breathing room in their household budgets at the start of the school year, which can be a busy and stressful time,” she said.