Backpacks pile up for Hartford students

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HARTFORD — While summer still rules across the state, at The Hartford company headquarters it was clear that back to school season is upon us.

It was all hands on deck at the company’s visitor center lobby where employees were busy stuffing school supplies in backpacks earmarked for Hartford school kids getting ready to start the year. The program is called the Back to School Giving Program.

“We have more than 15 offices around the country that are participating in this,” said Diane Cantello the VP of corporate sustainability at The Hartford.

Just in Hartford alone, employees are donating 1,000 backpacks for area students that will be distributed to groups like the Boys and Girls Club, Gift of Love, The Village for Families and Children, and the Wilson-Gray YMCA.

“The number one thing is they’re (students) happy about going back to school with a backpack full of supplies,” said Anthony Barrett, executive director from the YMCA said.

“This goes beyond writing insurance policies, we really want to build safe, strong and successful communities,” said Cantello, watching about 100 more backpacks getting filled up by her coworkers.