Matt Spencer: Collecting School Supplies for Kids in Need

Last summer Matt Spencer collected more than 600 pounds in school supplies for DuPage County students.

Matt Spencer first came to in April 2011 to discuss doing a project to earn his Eagle Scout honors. At first, he talked about a holding a food drive with the nonprofit.

His idea for the Eagle Scout project changed when Matt learned there would be many kids in need of school supplies because Loaves & Fishes was adding DuPage County to its service area and that the nonprofit wasn’t sure how it would meet the expected demand in the coming year. 

Immediately, Matt’s eyes lit up. He said, “I can help with that!”

On behalf of Loaves & Fishes, Community Relations Director Jody Bender nominated Matt for a Naperville Youth Service Award. The nonprofit’s goal is to end hunger in the community.

Every year, KidsMatter together with Mayor Pradel and the Naperville City Council, give out the  Youth Service Awards to deserving teen volunteers during a special ceremony.

Matt discussed with officials at Loaves & Fishes to learn what was needed and what the project would entail. Loaves & Fishes expected that it would need to help 1,500 students in preparation for their return to school in August by supplying backpacks and a set of grade-appropriate school supplies. 

As the months progressed, Matt checked in often to let officials know how things were coming along. Matt gathered the members of his troop to go door-to-door with donated bags and flyers of his own design in a region of south central Naperville consisting of about 800 homes.

Matt and the members of his troop collected 637 pounds of school supplies, which were collected and brought to Loaves & Fishes. The dedication and leadership of Matt Spencer helped Loaves & Fishes equip a record number of 1,572 students with school supplies.



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