Families are expected to spend more on back to school clothes and supplies this year.
How does $688 sound? For some families, it is too much.
Channel 8's Kim Jackson shows how a national program eases that burden.
Packing the kids up for back to school can be expensive, almost as much as a utility bill. And for some families, it's that serious.
Helen Williams is busy with her two great great great nephews that she is raising.
"Don't ask me why I did this, but somebody had to do it. I'd rather take care of them myself, than see them go into the system. I'm doing the best I can. They are some pretty good boys. They keep me on my toes as old I am, they keep me active," she said as they shopped.
Her boys, Armani and Jordan were selected to receive gift cards, through a partnership of Target and the Salvation Army.
"This is a great help to me right now. My husband has cancer so, we are going through cyberknife and all of that. Now I've got the babies and it's just a big help," she said.
60-local children get to buy paper pencils, or even uniform clothes.
"You look at the lists of some of those items now required by schools and they are easily, 80-100 dollars just for one child. Now you take that and multiply it by multiple children in a household, that's a lot of money," said Major April Taylor of the Salvation Army.
It's a burden lifted, for Helen, Armani and Jordan. Now, they are closer to being ready for school, and she has a little more peace of mind.
If your children need school supplies, there are many projects out there. As a last resort, school counselors usually have supplies in their office.