Butzel distributes nearly 400 backpacks filled with school supplies to K-6 students at William C. Abney Academy in Grand Rapids


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. –  Proper school supplies can help ensure a successful academic year for students. But all too many families cannot afford school supplies they need to help their children succeed. For this reason, Butzel law firm is continuing a tradition it started six years ago in Detroit, Mich. to give away brand new backpacks filled with school supplies to students at a local elementary school. But this year, Butzel is holding its backpack giveaway in Grand Rapids, Mich. where Butzel opened a new office earlier this year.

On September 5, 2023, Butzel attorneys and team members distributed nearly 400 backpacks filled with school supplies to K-6 students at William C. Abney Academy in Grand Rapids. Butzel opened an office in Grand Rapids in January and selected a local elementary school in its newest community to receive the backpacks filled with school supplies.

“It is a highlight for us to meet with teachers and students as they begin a new school year,” said Paul Mersino, President/CEO and Trustee of the Butzel Charitable Trust. “For many families, school supplies just can’t be at the top of the list when they are trying to pay the bills, keep the lights on, and put food on the table. Studies show that students who have the proper supplies they need for school obtain better grades and higher test scores.

“When students have the supplies they need, their attendance improves, which also leads to better performance,” he said. “By providing students with materials they need for school, we can help parents and families make ends meet and ensure they do not have to choose between purchasing school supplies and purchasing food, clothing, and other essential needs. Teachers also often pay for supplies out of pocket, and this also helps them, too. Our teachers have a very important job, and anything we can do to help them is an added benefit.”

Mersino added: “It is such a privilege for us to hold this backpack giveaway in Grand Rapids this year. We are honored to now be a part of this community and to have an office here in downtown Grand Rapids. Everyone in Grand Rapids has been so welcoming to Butzel, it is a pleasure for us to give back to the community.”

The Butzel Charitable Trust supports many local organizations year-round in an effort to give back to the region that it has been located in for nearly 170 years. This is the sixth year that Butzel partnered with the Kids in Need Foundation to bring backpacks to deserving school children. Butzel hopes to continue doing so every school year. 

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