Officeworks has kicked off its 2024 Back to School Appeal to help raise funds for thousands of Australian students in need, supported by The Smith Family’s Learning for Life program.

This year marks 11 years of the appeal and to date, Officeworks customers and team members have contributed more than $8 million, enabling more than 12,000 students across Australia to be supported by the program for an entire year.

Customers can donate to this year’s appeal in-store or online until 11 February with all funds raised supporting the Learning for Life program, which helps families impacted by poverty afford the cost of essential school supplies, provide personal support and extra educational programs.

Officeworks managing director, Sarah Hunter said, “We’re passionate about ensuring every child in Australia has the opportunity have an education, no matter what their circumstances are, and we’re proud of how Officeworks’ long-term partnership with The Smith Family helps us to support strong educational outcomes for students impacted by poverty.

“The rising cost of living continues to add to the financial strain for families, and we know that The Smith Family and Officeworks both play critical roles in supporting students to have what they need to start and continue their education affordably. This year there are more families than ever before who need a helping hand, and together, with our customers, we are excited to make a real impact in students’ lives, helping to close the literacy, numeracy and social connection divide for so many young people in Australia.”

The Smith Family CEO, Doug Taylor added, “We are grateful for the generous support Officeworks and their customers have provided The Smith Family through its Back to School campaign again this year and throughout our partnership.

“Now in its 11th year, the Officeworks Back to School campaign continues to have an enormously positive impact on thousands of students experiencing disadvantage, by ensuring they start the new year with everything they need for school and continue to have ongoing tailored, evidence-based learning and mentoring support on The Smith Family’s Learning for Lifeprogram. The unwavering support we receive from Officeworks through this partnership, enables more children and young people to overcome educational inequality and create better futures for themselves through the power of education.”

The Back to School Appeal is part of Officeworks’ People and Planet Positive commitment to support 30,000 students by 2025. Having already supported more than 40,000 students since 2020, Officeworks recently revised this goal to support 60,000 students by 2025.