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Newmarket sisters collecting back-to-school backpacks for shelters

Manha and Laiba Yusuf will distribute the backpacks filled with school supplies to 360Kids, Inn From the Cold, and Rose of Sharon, among others
2022 08 12 Manha and Laiba
Manha and Laiba Yusuf are collecting backpacks for local shelters.

Newmarket sisters and young philanthropists Manha and Laiba Yusuf are preparing for back to school by collecting backpacks and school supplies for local shelters. 

This is their fourth annual backpack drive. Laiba said they do it "so everyone will have a backpack to go to places and to school.”

It is a favourite fundraiser for the sisters. Manha said this is because they like putting together all the school supplies and delivering the bags to local shelters. 

Some of the places that will receive bags from the drive include 360kids, Inn From the Cold and Rose of Sharon, among others. 

For residents who want to contribute to the campaign, you can donate funds through the girls' website Stamp Out Stigma. You can also reach out via email at [email protected] to arrange a backpack donation. 

Last year, the campaign resulted in about 300 backpacks, which the sisters delivered to local organizations. 

Manha and Laiba have had a busy summer. Recently they held a community barbecue, have started doing free art sessions online, as well as pet therapy. 

"We just did the pet therapy in a building where we had Amethyst the goat. She’s a goat for mental health,” Manha said. 

Throughout the years, the sisters have raised thousands of dollars for Inn From The Cold, Newmarket's shelter for individuals without homes. 

Laiba said they like to give back to the community to “make smiles on everybody’s faces.” 

While the backpack drive aims to help other kids get ready to go back to school, the Yusuf sisters are also getting ready to go back to school where Manha will be going into Grade 6 and Laiba is starting Grade 4. 

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Elizabeth Keith

About the Author: Elizabeth Keith

Elizabeth Keith is a general assignment reporter. She graduated from Carleton University with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2017. Elizabeth is passionate about telling local stories and creating community.
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