"I will bring them to my Holy mountain and make them joyful in my house of prayer!"

Aldersgate United Methodist Church

Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Santa Fe, TX 409-925-2552

Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Santa Fe, TX 409-925-2552

Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Santa Fe, TX 409-925-2552Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Santa Fe, TX 409-925-2552Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Santa Fe, TX 409-925-2552

Backpack Buddy Program

Who We Are And What We Do

Since  October 2013, a small group of dedicated volunteers has purchased,  packed, and delivered bags of foods to the Santa Fe ISD elementary  schools for children who have limited or no access to nourishment on  weekends. Originally, 50 children received these vital packs of food. In February 2018, there were 155 students who benefited weekly from Backpack Buddy.

Backpack Buddy began with a true leap of faith  and an unwavering effort to ensure enough products would be available to  meet the needs for every identified student every weekend during the  school year. Donations from the Aldersgate United Methodist Church in  Santa Fe along with individuals and local organizations supplied the  initial funds needed to purchase items. Aldersgate UMC has continued to  support Backpack Buddy by providing work space and storage space for the  food items at no charge.

Because the number of identified students continues to increase, as well as the cost of the food, the  all-volunteer, community-based program became a stand-alone, non-profit  charity to ensure sustainability. The Internal Revenue Service granted a  501(c)(3) designation to Backpack Buddy on August 11, 2016. Also that  year, the State of Texas recognized Backpack Buddy as a non-profit  corporation. These designations allow the organization to seek funds and  resources from individuals, businesses, organizations,  philanthropically focused foundations, and employees who have  matching-grant connections to their companies and employers.

Backpack Buddy appreciates any and all monetary or in-kind donations in support of this effort providing essential food items for students on the weekends. Donated funds are applied 100% to purchase food items. Administrative costs such as insurance and postage are covered through fundraisers (bake sales, card party, etc.).

At retail cost, each bag costs approximately $7.50.



 1.)  Make a donation toward the purchase of food supplies
2.)  Host a Backpack Buddy Food Drive
3.)  Donate grocery gift cards
4.)  Help assemble the backpacks on Wednesdays at 10am

Donations (100%) go directly to the food and are tax deductible.

Backpack Buddy – Santa Fe
PO Box 384, Santa Fe, Texas 77510

For more information, call:

Mary Gillispie, Backpack Buddy President 409.256.3027 

or Christie Norman, Vice President 409.766.0014.  

Food Item List

All items must be individual servings.
Items must be shelf-stable (no refrigeration) and easy to open by students (grades Pre-K through 5).  Items do not have to be name-brand as listed; but all items must be the correct size for consistency.

Included Food Items

Milk – 8 oz carton, non-refrigerated
Juice boxes – 6.75 oz (no pouches)
Cereal (ex. Kellogg’s Variety Pack)
Cookies (ex. Nabisco individual bags)
Cheese Crackers / Peanut Butter Crackers
Cheez-it or Goldfish Crackers
Vienna Sausage
Slim Jims, small (ex. 120 per box)
Raisins (boxes)
Fruit Snacks
Applesauce Cups
Pudding Cups
Chewy Granola Bars
Pop Tarts
Fresh fruit

Any assistance provided to this ministry would be greatly appreciated!

Our  Annual Card Party to benefit the Backpack Buddy Program was a huge  success!  Thank you to all the volunteers who made it happen and to those who attended!  We could not have done it without you ALL!