About Us

Our Story

There comes a time in everyone’s life where you just can’t sit still anymore. I have arrived at that place.

Like many of you, my heart is crushed at the sheer numbers of Ukrainian refugees looking for shelter. The task of providing for these people, mostly women/children, is monumental. No one person could ever possibly solve all of this heartache. But one person… YOU… can help one child or one family. And I’m asking for your help.

In mid March, 2022, I met with the director of the Red Cross, and the Cologne emergency services manager about what they need to help the refugees arriving into Cologne. After our conversation I had the idea we could prepare backpacks for a boy or a girl with many of the necessity items the Red Cross needs. I asked them if this was a good idea, and the Director said to me… “when can you get me these bags and how many can you provide?” With that, Operation BackPack4Kids was born.

William Vaughan, Founder and Executive Director of BackPack4Kids

  • BP4K will be at EAA’s AirVenture Oshkosh, July24th -July 30th, 2023.
  • Operation Backpack4kids is currently engaged with providing our services to those affected by the Earthquakes in Turkey in Syria. Our first shipment of backpacks to Turkey left Louisville, Kentucky (USA) on February 16th, 2023. A BP4K team arrived in Gaziantep Turkey on April 26th, 2023.

  • BP4K became an American Red Cross partner in January 2023.
  • BP4K opened an operations center in Louisville, Kentucky (USA). Spring 2023
  • BP4K received 501.c.3 status from the IRS in July of 2022. This status will allow us more opportunities to expand our operation to become even more effective in achieving our mission.
  • We have delivered thousands of backpacks to kids arriving in Cologne and surrounding towns including special trips to Poland, not only handing out backpacks, but helping the local refugee effort however we could.
  • We’ve made tailored bags for mothers with newborns, special needs families, and families traveling with elder parents and grandparents. We have even managed to have our backpacks delivered to refugee sites within the Ukraine border thanks to partnerships we’ve made with other non-profit organizations. When one of these partnerships needed temperature controlled coolers to transport delicate medications by small aircraft destined for refugees inside Ukraine, BP4K delivered.
  • On March 4th, 2023, BP4K hosted its first, “Build-A-Backpack-Day,” in Louisville, Kentucky. This created an inventory of backpacks that are immediately available when needed so BP4K can respond within hours to any disaster.
Flyer for BP4K 1st Build a Backpack Day

  • BP4K is expanding our organization so we are ready to respond anywhere, anytime.
  • Stay tuned for updates!

As of April 2023, BP4K has accomplished the following:

  • Acheived 501.c.3 status with the IRS
  • Became a partner of the American Red Cross
  • Over 4,000 backpacks delivered
  • 265 Backpacks delivered to the Turkish Earthquake relief effort.
  • Established a US based operations center
  • €130,000 in critical medications delivered in our donated temperature controlled coolers
  • 20 infant transports made with the BabyPod
  • 402 backpacks delivered to refugee children in Poland in a single week
  • Over 3,000 hours of volunteer service given by our pilot group

Legal Status

BP4K is incorporated in the state of Kentucky and has 501 (c)(3) status with the IRS. Click here for more information.

“The test of a civilization is in the way that it cares for its members in need.”

Original quote by Pearl S. Buck

Contact Us

email: info@Backpack4Kids.org

Eat at Memos!