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Worthy Causes

Portlanders doing good

• Groups collect school supplies

An international charity and a local program are both collecting back-to-school supplies this fall for children.

Schoolhouse Supplies' Tools for Schools program, sponsored by Knowledge Universe of Portland, links 32 local businesses donating backpacks with a year's worth of school supplies - a huge help to families that have to spend about $96.39 a year on school supplies.

More than 11,000 at-risk students in 26 Portland schools receive the Tools for Schools donations.

The drive kicked off in early August. At 10 a.m. on Sept. 8, volunteers with Knowledge Universe will deliver 600 backpacks to students at North Portland's Beach Elementary School during 'March to Beach.'

To donate, go to www.schoolhousesupplies.org.

10 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 8, Beach Elementary School, 1710 N. Humboldt St., www.schoolhousesupplies.org

• Operation Christmas Childextends worldwide

Meanwhile, Operation Christmas Child, a year-round project by Christian relief organization Samaritan's Purse, is spotlighting back-to-school sales as the place for children to donate shoeboxes of goodies to needy children across the world.

The shoebox gifts of toys, school supplies and letters of encouragement require months of organization and reach 8.5 million children in the grip of natural disaster, disease, war, terrorism and famine. Since Operation Christmas Child launched in 1993, volunteers have delivered shoeboxes to more than 86 million children in about 130 countries.

To participate, fill shoeboxes with school supplies, necessities like toilet paper, toys and a personal letter, and drop the gifts off at a local collection site during National Collection Week, Nov. 14-21.

Operation Christmas Child, 303-745-9179, www.samaritanspurse.org/occ

• Northwest Dance Project hosts party

An evening of dance, food and drinks awaits revelers at nonprofit Northwest Dance Project's Party of the Year Saturday, Sept. 10. Activities are from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $75.

The evening is sponsored by Nel Centro Restaurant in Hotel Modera. Master Chef David Machado will serve French and Italian dishes, and company dancers are performing pieces designed by Artistic Director Sarah Slipper, while Skip VonKuske of the Portland Cello Project plays live in Hotel Modera's courtyard garden.

All proceeds will benefit company dancers.

6:30-10 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 10, 1408 S.W. Sixth Ave., tickets: $75, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., www.nwdanceproject.org

• Scrap metal drive benefits café

The new nonprofit community coffee house Rosewood Café, 609 S.E. 162nd Ave., is collecting scrap metal and hosting a barbecue next Saturday, Sept. 10, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Useful metal could include shovels, bed frames, lawnmowers or tin cans, Rosewood volunteers say. Trucks on loan from Rex Heating will be there to haul donations to be recycled for cash.

Portlanders with big items for donation should e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to arrange for pickup.

8 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 10, Rosewood Café, 609 S.E. 162nd Ave., www.rosewoodinitiative.org