Novo Nordisk Helps Thousands of Area Students Prepare for a Successful School Year

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Novo Nordisk—a global pharmaceutical company and innovative pioneer in diabetes and chronic conditions care—will be donating 3,000 backpacks filled with school supplies and other essentials for Beyond Housing’s Beyond the Backpack event, this Saturday, August 10th at Normandy High School in North St. Louis County.

Basic needs items like school supplies can be expensive and difficult to afford, which can present real challenges for students and teachers during the school year. Every year at the event—hosted by Beyond Housing and the Normandy Schools Collaborative— up to 3,000 backpacks filled with school supplies are handed out to students Pre K-12 within the Normandy Schools Collaborative to make sure students are prepared for a successful academic year.

“Bringing together volunteers, non-profit partners and corporate partners like Novo Nordisk helps us create a real impact in the lives of students and families in our community,” said Chris Krehmeyer, President & CEO of Beyond Housing. “Thanks to the generous support of Novo Nordisk and others, we’re able to turn simple backpacks into a vehicle to transform lives and this community for generations.”

At the company’s U.S. retreat in Las Vegas, Novo Nordisk employees personally assembled 3,000 backpacks with essential school supplies, as well as hygiene kits containing essential personal care items. The backpacks were then driven across the country to Normandy High School.

To help students access the resources they need to be successful at school, Beyond Housing has also placed 14 Family Engagement Liaisons (FEL’s) in the Normandy schools. The FEL’s identify and resolve any needs inhibiting a student’s success by actively forming trusting relationships with the students, families and teachers. To date, the program has proven very successful by providing basic needs, utility assistance, food, and uniforms while increasing attendance, test scores, and academic performance. 

This program represents just one aspect of Beyond Housing’s comprehensive community development approach. Other programs support housing, health, personal finance and economic development initiatives aimed at helping entire communities become better places to live.