An elementary school student in a blue jacket sits on concrete steps, reading a book which covers their face. Their backpack and homework sit beside them on the concrete steps.
School supplies ensure young learners of all ages have the tools they need to meet their academic goals!
Photo: IRC

Help newcomer youth get ready to start their school year by building and sharing back-to-school learning kits! The IRC is seeking learning kits for elementary and secondary school students, to ensure they have the tools they need to succeed as they return to school this fall. 

The IRC works with newcomer youth across the greater Seattle region - supporting their understanding of US school systems, helping them meet their academic goals, and building confidence. With programs ranging from rock climbing to remote learning, the IRC in Seattle connects with over 450 students each year. In 2020, over 400 at-home learning kits were delivered to families across the greater Seattle region. Colleagues, friends, and family came together to collect supplies - supporting students as they shifted to learning from home.

As the Biden administration has begun to take steps toward welcoming more new neighbors and reversing harmful, xenophobic policies - we must ensure no newcomer student is without the tools they need to succeed! The IRC is seeking back-to-school supplies and backpacks for children of all ages, some of whom will be entering the US school system for the first time. Learn how groups and individuals can contribute below.

How to participate

Community members may purchase items from our Amazon Wishlist or gather items from any retailer. Items from our wishlist will ship directly to our mailbox, and be assembled into full kits by our youth team. If you'd prefer, items can be shipped or delivered to the IRC's office! Items can be shipped to International Rescue Committe,126 SW 148th St, #C100 126, Burien, WA, 98166-1984 or delivered to our office in SeaTac (by appointment only). For more donation shipment/delivery information, check out these FAQs.

A checklist of elementary school supplies
A checklist of middle and high school supplies













If you're interested in supporting the IRC's local work in other ways, consider making an unrestricted gift where it will be used wherever needed most


Can I donate used items?

Lightly used items (like graphing calculators) are great, but we ask that all items are in a like-new condition.

When is the deadline to deliver donations?

This is an ongoing effort!

Where can I ship my donations?

International Rescue Committee,126 SW 148th St, #C100-126, Burien, WA, 98166-1984. Please note that this is a mailing address only, and not the IRC's physical office location.

Can I drop off donations in person?

The IRC's office is currently open to the public by appointment only. If you'd like to organize a donation delivery on behalf of a group, please reach out to [email protected] to schedule a drop-off at the IRC office in SeaTac, WA. Please plan to wear a face mask and practice physical distancing when making drop-offs. 

Can I add on items?

Please email [email protected] for any specific donation questions - but additional pencils, pens, or supplies are always welcome and will be shared with students throughout the school year. 

Can I include a card with my donations?

Yes! Cards or notes with messages of welcome are encouraged. You will not know the exact person the coat will be given to, so a general message of welcome and kindness is best. Please avoid religious messages or iconography. 

Are the items I donate tax deductible?

Yes. The IRC is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and both financial and in-kind donations are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. Please include an itemized list of donations with your shipment, or email the list to IRC after you've delivered your items. IRC will issue you an acknowledgement for tax purposes. Donors are responsible for assigning a value to in-kind donations for tax purposes. Save those receipts! While not required, it is very helpful if you also provide IRC with copies of your receipts. This allows IRC to maintain accurate documentation of donations received by clients, a requirement of many of our government-funded programs. 

Have additional questions?

Email [email protected] for more information or to ask specific questions!