The charity has been handing out backpacks to children in need for 13 years.
Stephen McPhee started the project when he was just five-years-old after overhearing his parents talk about homeless Albertans.
“I soon learned that not everyone has a place to live,” McPhee said. “I thought it wasn’t right so I wanted to help.”
The kits include hats, mittens, toiletries, a blanket, and an age-appropriate toy.
On top of trying to deliver more backpacks than ever, this year also holds special meaning for Stephen.
Stephen’s father Jim McPhee was the charity’s president until he passed away in 2017 from cancer.
Now that Stephen is 18, he’s taken over as president and wants to carry on where his dad left off.
Taking over a large project at a young age also motivates some of the charity’s newer volunteers like Sara Race.
Stephen’s Backpacks hopes to hand out 6,000 backpacks this yea,r and has also started a year-round project called Project Hope, which aims to help out less-fortunate Albertans furnish their homes.
“We get so much and we take it for granted,” Stephen said. “Just to give back could, honestly, be the best Christmas present you could ever give someone.”