SOMERSET COUNTY, NJ - The Somerset County Commission on the Status of Women has launched its annual Project First Class school supplies collection for children of families served by the Food Bank Network of Somerset County.

The commission is looking for new school supplies, like notebooks, three-ring binders, paper, highlighters, markers, pens, pencils and crayons. In addition, they will be accepting new or gently used backpacks.

Donations can be dropped off at the Somerset County Freeholders Office on the third floor of the county administration building at 20 Grove Street in Somerville. Items can be dropped off now through Aug. 3, and the office is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except July 3.

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According to a release, free parking is available in the adjacent Bernie Field Parking Deck, off East High Street.

In addition, donations can  be dropped off Wednesday from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. now through July 29 at the Somerset County Clerk's Office, on the first floor of the administration building.

"Many families are struggling to make ends meet, and, for them, school supplies are unaffordable," freeholder deputy director, and commission liaison, Patricia Walsh said in the release. "We hope that individuals, organizations and businesses once again support Project First Class and help these children get a good start in school this fall."

For more information, contact Project First Class co-chairs Smriti Agrawal and Janice Fields at