It's more than just a backpack

Saint Paul, MN   |


We believe every child in America should have equal opportunity and access to a quality education. By partnering with teachers and students in under-resourced schools, we provide the support needed for teachers to teach and learners to learn.

Ruling year info



Mr. Corey A. Albert Gordon

Main address

2719 Patton Rd

Saint Paul, MN 55113 USA

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NTEE code info

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (P12)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The Kids In Need Foundation works to ensure that every child is prepared to learn and succeed in the classroom by providing free school supplies nationally to students most in need. Roughly 15 million children in the U.S. currently live in poverty and are expected to attend school without the basic supplies they need to succeed. Teachers dedicated to serving these students face the added burden of funding much-needed supplies themselves, often from their own pockets. -Closing the opportunity gap in Americas undeserved communities

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Second Responder

School supplies provide a path back to normal. Our Second Responder® program provides supplies to teachers and students affected by natural disasters. KINF works with local authorities, schools, and sponsors to help students return to their routines with the tools they need to continue their education. These include hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, Michael, and Florence and the tornadoes that struck Dallas and Nashville in 2020.
Unlike those providing the critical necessities of food, shelter, and medical aid after a disaster, our Second Responder® program operates during the recovery period following the devastation. We try to bring a little hope and a reminder that things will get better with time when we work together. Thanks to our national sponsor, Dollar General Literacy Foundation, we have been able to provide thousands of backpacks to students impacted by natural disasters.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people
Victims of disaster

Kids In Need Foundation's Supply A Teacher Program seeks to empower teachers by providing supplies for their classrooms and eliminating the burden of purchasing supplies out of their own pocket. Each teacher supported through Supply A Teacher receives two large boxes filled with the core items they need to fuel a full semester of active learning for 24 students. Donors can fund a teacher, school, or entire school district.

Supply A Teacher Boxes include pencils, pencil pouches, folders, notebooks, sharpeners, erasers, rulers, and pens. We also include additional items such as crayons, markers, highlighters, loose-leaf paper, and colored pencils based on the grade level.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people

Each year, we are honored to help organizations, community groups, and teams, large and small, come together to support under-resourced students through backpack sponsorships.

We offer pre-assembled backpacks filled with essential school supplies that are delivered to qualifying schools, or delivery of bulk supplies to groups wanting to sponsor backpacks. We encourage groups to add a personal touch by adding a handwritten uplifting note to each student recipient.

Each sponsored backpack costs $25 and includes:
3 folders, 2 notebooks, a package of pencils,
a package of markers, a pair of scissors, 2 glue sticks,
a package of Post-its, 2 pens, a package of crayons,
a pencil pouch, a ruler, an eraser, and a pencil sharpener, all in a new backpack!

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people

Kids In Need Foundation's National Network of Resource Centers is comprised of over 40 mission-driven organizations across the country. The Network provides teachers the opportunity to 'shop' for school supplies. All product donated through KINF will ALWAYS be free for teachers nationwide...they will never pay a dime. From core school supplies to environment-enhancing decor, members of the Network equip teachers with the tools they need to ensure they can focus on the lessons at hand instead of what learning resources are missing in their classrooms.

From Seattle to Miami, our dedicated partners support under-resourced teachers and educators in schools that have a high percentage of students participating in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). As a Network, we are fueled by the knowledge that our collective impact strengthens our students and teachers.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Children and youth

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of children who received school supplies

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Supply A Student

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

-Provide the supplies teachers need to be successful, so they can focus on their students and not on the burden of finding funding or paying for supplies themselves.
-Provide students with the tools they need to succeed , so they have the confidence and support needed to keep attending school
-Provide manufacturers and retailers with a way to turn excess supply of these needed resources into a business-friendly solution that contributes positively to communities in need.

-We help combat absenteeism by ensuring students are properly equipped to participate and succeed in the classroom, and remove the barrier of need from their decision to go to school each day.
We help bolster teacher confidence by supplying them with adequate resources to set up effective classrooms and lesson the burden on their personal finances.
-The Kids In Need Foundation partners with 42 locations across the country to help distribute much needed school supplies to kids who would otherwise go without. These organizations support challenged communities where 70% or more of the kids are on a federal nutrition program. With the generous support of our donors, sponsors, and national product partners, we supply them with the basic tools needed to learn and succeed in school.
-The Kids In Need Foundation’s Second Responder® program is dedicated to providing school supplies to students affected by natural disasters. We work with local authorities, schools, and select sponsors to help them return to normal routines.
-Our School Ready Supplies program provides brand new backpacks filled with the core school supplies students need. Each backpack build program starts with a minimum donation of $2,500 which funds materials for 100 students, and allows Kids In Need to provide for an entire school in our network that has high need. Higher sponsorship levels will provide for larger schools, or multiple schools in multiple communities where your organization wishes to help and have a greater impact.
- program, offering successful applicants with TWO large boxes – enough core school supplies to last an entire classroom for at least one semester.

Well defined and established board of directors, executive leadership team, teacher and volunteer database. Additionally our donors, network of affiliate resource centers, national programs, system of moving product throughout the U.S. and strong community relationships.

In our 25 years, we have distributed a billion dollars in supplies to kids who would otherwise go without them. Each year, the Kids In Need Foundation helps nearly 200,000 teachers and more than 5 million students in some of the most challenged communities across the country. We hope to continue to serve more and more teachers and students every year through growth in our donor relations, retail partnership program, network of resource centers and national programs (SRS, Second Responder, SAT)

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We share the feedback we received with the people we serve

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, We don’t have the right technology to collect and aggregate feedback efficiently, We serve children - a vulnerable population - so we cannot get feedback from them. This is a challen



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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


Connect with nonprofit leaders


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Board of directors
as of 03/05/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Peter Fahrenkopf

SureTape Technologies (retired 2022)

Term: 2024 - 2027

William Briggs


Peter Fahrenkopf

Shurtech Brands

Victor Pham

Blue Sky The Color of Imagination

Paul Kurtz


Terry Reed

Comfort Systems USA

Sarah Kydd


Corey A Gordon

Kids In Need Foundation

Brad Demsky


Heather Green


Jay Isaman

PNC Commercial Banking - MN

Gregory Works


Mikaela Wardlaw Lemmon

Newells Brands

John Castillo

Spectrum Brands

Robert Rogers

Mid-State Aerospace

Jane Thompson

A Gift for Teaching

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 2/12/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Asian/Asian American
Gender identity

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 02/14/2024

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.