Planning for Back to School During Uncertain Times

Learn more about Everyone Home DC’s Thanks-GIVING Collection. Happening Now!

Support Everyone Home DC’s 2020/21 Back to School Initiative to Distribute 300 $50 Gift Cards to Rising Scholars

As the school year comes to a close, we can all agree; this past year has been anything but ordinary. Schools closed, and Everyone Home DC scholars spent the final months of the school year distance learning. We don’t have a clear picture as to what next school year will look like, although we do know that the families we work with will need support, now more than ever, to ensure they have the necessary resources to succeed in the upcoming school year. Every year around this time, we start our backpack and school supplies drive. This year, we are doing the same and getting creative to ensure we offer our families flexible support while also limiting traffic to our drop-in day center and headquarters to encourage continued social distancing. 

Everyone Home DC is shifting this year’s model to collect $50 gift cards (Visa, Mastercard, Target, Walmart, and Amazon) as well as monetary donations. The DCPS school year is scheduled to begin on August 31, 2020. Everyone Home DC programs will distribute the gift cards to the families we work with in August. 

This year’s goal is to distribute a gift card to each Everyone Home DC scholar, which means we need 300 $50 gift cards. We need YOUR help to reach our goal. Consider running a drive to collect gift cards at your work, place of worship, book club, OR you can sponsor a child or two individually. Every little bit helps. Below is more information on how to get started and how to get the gift cards to Everyone Home DC. Thank you for assisting Everyone Home DC to support the nearly 300 rising scholars who work with our program! 


We would love to hear from you if you plan to run a drive or collection, so we can plan (and budget) appropriately. Contact Kate Akalonu at to discuss what our needs are if there are certain types of cards to focus on and share how many you plan to contribute. We can also provide any brainstorming support to get the word out to your community if you are running a drive.

Everyone Home DC families expressed most appreciating Visa, Mastercard, Target, Walmart, and Amazon gift cards. 

You can also make a monetary donation that can be used to purchase gift cards by program staff and sent electronically to families. Consider making a donation in $50 increments today!


  • If purchasing gift cards at a store or online, you are welcome to mail them to Everyone Home DC’s main headquarters address. Please contact Kate at if you have any questions or to coordinate a drop off.Mail Gift Cards to:
    Everyone Home DC Development Office
    415 2nd Street NE, 3rd Floor
    Washington DC 20002

    Please note: For the health and safety of our guests at Shirley’s Place, we will not be accepting gift card drop offs at our drop-in day center (which has historically been the location for drop offs in the past.) Thank you for understanding.
  • You are also welcome to skip the process of purchasing cards and make a donation on our Back to School Collection donation page. Program staff will then purchase gift cards and send electronically them to families. Consider making a donation in $50 increments today

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to Kate Akalonu at We are on standby to provide support in the same way that you are always on standby to provide support for our most urgent needs. Thank you!