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School Supply Support

It’s back-to-school season and The Arc Minnesota is here to help. School supplies inherently come with a demanding cost element. With the expensive nature of supplies and rising prices, it is difficult to add this additional finance to your plate.

To assist families, below is a list of resources with free school supplies throughout the state of Minnesota. Events are taking place soon. Make sure to check the dates listed!

Twin Cities:

Register for the 3rd Annual Back 2 School BBQ on August 20th from 11 A.M.- 4 P.M. at Zanewood Recreation Center in Brooklyn Park. 3rd Annual Back 2 School BBQ Tickets, Sat, Aug 19, 2023 at 11:00 AM | Eventbrite

More event options with free supplies can be found on under the search terms “free school supplies” and your city.


Rochester’s 3rd Annual Back to School Block Party and Parade takes place on August 19th from  12 P.M. to 6 P.M. at Reverend Martin Luther King Park. Click here to learn more.


Back to School Bash. Wednesday, Aug 23rd from 4-7 at the Monticello Middle School. More info: Back to School Bash, Monticello Middle School, August 23 2023 |

Blue Earth County and North Mankato Schools Only.

Back to school event. Thursday, Aug 10th from 1-4 at the Salvation Army. More info: Back to School Community Fair, Mankato Salvation Army, August 10 2023 |

Action Day 2023

Every child deserves an education that prepares them for success. Yet each year, 100,000 K-12 students in the greater Twin Cities return to school without the school supplies they need, impacting self-esteem and performance. You can help ensure students start the year with the right tools to support their work in the classroom.

Inflation and the rising cost of living have significantly impacted families in the greater Twin Cities, and the need for help from our community is greater than ever.

It’s time to level the playing field! Greater Twin Cities United Way is bringing together community changemakers for our annual Action Day initiative to provide backpacks full of school supplies for 40,000 local students! This year’s event will be co-hosted by the Minnesota Twins and St. Paul Saints at Target Field on August 3.

More Info: GTCUW – Action Day 2023 (

It is always a good idea to reach out to your child’s school district to see if there is already a donation system in place. Regardless of the event, be sure to check if there are any sign-up or proof of residency requirements. Be sure to arrive early if there are limited supplies!

There are also low-cost options for essentials.

Arc’s Value Village is a fantastic asset for inexpensive dorm supplies. Learn more about the thrift stores here. The Arc Minnesota provides resources for budget stretchers. Click here for more information.

Hopefully, these resources allow your child to start the school year on a great note!