Operation Backpack 2017 was a BIG success! 

The Pettengill House, Inc. would like to express heartfelt gratitude to the entire community for the outpouring of support we received for our Operation Backpack program. This annual backpack and school supply drive supports Pettengill’s School Linked Service program, the goal of which is to help every student start the school year ready to learn. This year, as a result of the generosity of the community, we were able to distribute 414 new backpacks filled with school supplies to local children in need. This brings our thirteen year total to 5,177 backpacks! We will continue to distribute backpacks on an as-needed basis throughout the school year.

The Pettengill House, Inc. relies on community collaboration to help families in need. In addition to the many local individuals, groups, and businesses who donated to this program, we would like to thank the locations that agreed to serve as public donation collection sites: Align Credit Union, Amesbury Public Library , Cider Hill Farm, The Dance Place, Eclipx Salon, Greater Newburyport Mothers and Families Club, Holy Family Parish, Main Street Congregational Church Amesbury, Salisbury Public Library, St. James Episcopal Church, Star of the Sea Church, Stone Ridge Properties of Amesbury, Unity on the River, and the YWCA of Greater Newburyport. A special thank you as well to all the bank staff who coordinated the many participating bank branches throughout our local communities at The Institution for Savings Bank, The Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank, and The Provident Bank.

We would also like to acknowledge and appreciate our dedicated volunteers who donated their time to pick up donations at the above sites, shop for supplies, sort and organize, distribute, and assist with the program in many various ways: Charlotte Arivella, Peg Brown, Mariellen and Serena Burkinshaw, Deb Casey, Sharyn Dahn, Fr. Scott Euvrard, Barbara Fernald, Christine Fichera, Stacey and Haley Gordon, Karen Gulla, Jessica Knezek, Gene Landis, Pat Mayo, Billie McLane, Janice Meinelt, Sandra Licciardo and the Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank’s charitable group: “Helping Hands”, Elizabeth Paskowski, Natalie Riley, Nicole Rodriguez, Patty Smyrski, JoAnne Waters, Amy Weickert, and Deb Welch. Our sincere appreciation also goes to all of our local collaborative partner organizations, including The Newburyport Elks, The Rotary Clubs of Amesbury and Newburyport, as well as our school partners who helped provide district-wide communication to families and faculty. Special thanks also to Laura Bentley of Newburyport.com, Win Damon of WNBP Radio, Richard Lodge of The Newburyport Daily News, and Amy Weickert of Pennies for Poverty for giving their time and talent for community outreach.

On behalf of Deborah Smith, Executive Director, as well as our staff, clients, and the Board of Directors, I would like to thank everyone who contributed to Operation Backpack. The overwhelming support and generosity from the community made this year’s drive a big success, and made a big difference in the lives of many local families.


Sierra Partlan

Program Coordinator

The Pettengill House, Inc.