Struggle to Strength

Kenzi’s Causes donates school supplies and backpacks to kids in need this august.

Photo courtesy of KB Digital Designs

From pain comes purpose. This couldn’t be more true for Jessica Bachus, founder and executive director of Kenzi’s Causes—and mom of Kenzi who was stillborn when Bachus was six months pregnant in 2007. Her grief has channeled into an important mission to help other families. In her daughter’s memory, she founded Dolls for Daughters and began providing dolls to young girls during the holiday season who would otherwise go without. Over a decade later, her heartbreak has led to a breakthrough that would change the trajectory of struggling families in the Colorado area forever. “Sometimes the most unfortunate circumstances can transform into unexpected beauty. Kenzi’s Causes is a testament to that.”

The Mission

Established in 2010, Kenzi’s Kidz helps relieve the financial burdens of low-income families who are taking the necessary steps to create a stable environment for their children. Each year, six families are welcomed into the program.

“The families are nominated by one of our nonprofit partners in Denver or Fort Collins,” Bachus says. “We work with all types of families. Single parent families, such as Mom or Dad raising the children, we also have three grandmothers in the program raising grandkids, an aunt raising kids, and traditional families where two parents are in the home.”

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Over the course of one year, the team has provided fundamental items to succeed to kids: educational supplies, access to extracurricular activities, and gifts for birthdays and holidays. Parents also receive direct assistance through financial planning services: CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) certification courses, car repairs, etc.

Packz 4 Kidz

Under the Kenzi’s Kidz umbrella, Bachus saw another need—and began providing backpacks and school supplies for the children who were a part of, or alumni of, the program. As a former teacher for Denver Public Schools, she saw first-hand children arriving on the first day of school without the necessary supplies to be successful and feel like everyone else.

“These days, too many children start the first day of school without the supplies needed to be successful. As a result, the Packz 4 Kidz program provides the items families need for the first day of school— including the tools and excitement of having a new backpack with new supplies of their own.”

Packz 4 Kidz provides backpacks to kids in Denver, Rifle, and Colorado Springs on August 14th and in Pueblo on August 15th. Locations can be found on the nonprofit’s website and Facebook page. The program operates annually every August and serves children in ECE through 12th grade. “The goal this year is to provide 4,000 low-income children with new backpacks.”