Donated school supplies like these are expected to help dozens of students as they return to class.

Over 300 families in need will receive school supplies courtesy of a social media-led donation drive.

The drive began when locals Jeff Shultz and Selah Smith noticed a need for school supplies on the Facebook group “Pay it Forward Always Edmonton.”

“We went on there and noticed many single parents out there not having the funds due to COVID to actually get out and buy supplied for the children, and it was a big stress,” said Shultz.

The event started with the goal to provide supplies for 17 students but quickly grew into a massive donation drive.

“It blew my mind,” Jeff explained, adding, “it just grew and grew and grew,”

The donations came from residents in both Edmonton and St. Albert. The items were organized by grade and arranged for both in-class and home school students before being delivered.

“We have pictures of them that they send us with their children opening their bag and they're so happy.”

Shultz, a father of seven, says he understands what families are going through at this time of year.

“I know a lot of people just can’t afford it and I’ve been there, I’ve struggled, and the last the last thing I want to do is see another parent struggle just to have their child get an education.”

Shultz encourages people to join the Facebook group so that the community can continue helping each other when needed.