Kids in need get a jump on back-to-school shopping

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LIVINGSTON -

Many kids don't want to hear about heading back to school just yet, but some were getting the chance to be ready for class at no cost.

The 10th annual Back to School event in Livingston was held Sunday, where hundreds of children from low-income families were paired up with a personal shopper at the Joseph Kushner Hebrew Academy.

The pairs go to station to station, picking out new backpacks, clothes and school supplies.

Children like 9-year-old Nichole were excited to get items for school, while volunteers were happy to assist.

"It feels amazing to give back and help anyway I can," said volunteer Ayesha Aly Ahmed, of West Orange. "I don't have a lot but whatever I can give, I love to do a little extra."

The event is sponsored by the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) in Essex County and made possible by the help of hundreds of volunteers.

Lesley Green, president of the NCJW in Essex County, say this is a new experience for many of these kids.

"Many of the children who come here haven't had that opportunity before--to get something new is a big deal for them," Green said. "Might be the first time they get something new and they know it’s theirs.”

The children were all signed up through social services agencies in Essex County.

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