Little girl makes big backpack donation to Penquis

Fourth grader donates 57 backpacks filled with supplies for students in need.
Published: Aug. 17, 2020 at 7:09 PM EDT
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - For the third year a nine-year-old girl from Brewer is helping other kids in need.

We were there Monday when Ava Burke and her parents dropped off a big donation to Penquis in Bangor.

She brought 57 backpacks stuffed with supplies for their back to school program.

Ava’s birthday was earlier this month.

She has used her birthday money from her last three celebrations to buy backpacks for the program.

This year she even had some help from some of her friends.

She received donations from her softball team, her dance class and she asked for her family members to donate backpacks for her birthday.

Ava says it’s because she doesn’t want any kids to have to go without one.

”I just didn’t want them to be embarrassed and stuff when they go into school and didn’t have the needed school supplies. So, I just wanted them to feel confident,” says Ava.

“We’re super proud. We could really ask for anything else. She’s super selfless. She’ll do anything for anyone. She wants all kids to included and happy and that’s all we can really ask,” says her mom, April Burke.

“It’s powerful. It’s one of those things that you hope your kid will take two but the year for the year she’s just gone above and beyond,” says her dad, Adam Burke.

“Donating means so much to us right now especially from somebody just as sweet and wonderful as a bug. You know these are really difficult times in our usual ways of collecting this year have been really really difficult so something like this is needed more than ever,” says Renae Muscatell, Penquis.

Ava will be donating more next year. She hopes to double the number of backpacks.

Penquis still needs a lot of backpacks and supplies. You can donate online and find more info at

you can donate online and find more info at

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