Union Home Mortgage Annual Partner Backpack Project


Union Home Mortgage Partners all over the U.S. have participated in collecting school supplies for school systems and nonprofits in their communities. This year with the help of Volunteers of America and University Settlement, we were able to have a distribution event on UHM’s corporate campus.

Written by Hannah Loewenthal

Every year Union Home Mortgage Partners across the country participate in an annual back to school supply drive, called Partner Backpack Project. For the fourth summer in a row, UHM Partners contributed to collecting and donating school supplies for their local school systems and nonprofits. Due to COVID-19 and most partners working remotely, the initiative looked a little different this year.

Normally our branches and corporate campus would act as drop off locations for the collection of the supplies and then distribute them to a local non-profit or school system in their respected area. With the uncertainty of whether students would be in the classroom or not this year, the Foundation Team worked to creatively think of a process to still get backpacks into the communities. Because of COVID-19 hitting families hard financially, the need was greater than ever for a child to receive the necessary supplies to succeed during the school year. Even remote students were still in need of receiving the tools to succeed.

This year with the help of Volunteers of America and University Settlement, Union Home Mortgage was able to host a contactless distribution event on our corporate campus. Families of children in need were able to drive up and receive a backpack, along with other resources from some of our non-profit partners like information on healthcare plans, telehealth appointments for mental health, access to literacy and budgeting materials, and more.

Becky Carlino, Director of Development for Volunteers of America Ohio and Indiana, took a moment to express her gratitude for this year’s efforts,

“Union Home Mortgage Foundation has been ever present with Volunteers of America this summer.  It’s not just Operation Backpack, which is amazing.  It’s all the little moments in-between… All the meetings and emails, to ensure every child in northern Ohio has access to the tools they need to thrive in school - right from your own corporate location.  Every email to your partners, (throughout the country) encouraging them to participate in Operation Backpack.  Just WOW. This is how Foundations can change the world. You’ve taken your goals and moved the Foundation from transactional to impactful. It is exemplary and quite frankly, humbling to travel with your team on this journey. With you, and Union Home Mortgage, your passion meets the pavement and really works hard to make a difference.”

With morale and participation from corporate and branch Partners, we were able to collect close to 1,000 backpacks.  That is 1,000 more children that are going to be able to be the best students that they can be thanks to our Partners and their generous donations! Thank you UHM Partners!