As the new school year quickly approaches, there is a local non-profit helping make sure that teachers have everything they need to start the year.

The Teacher's Desk is a local non-profit that lets teachers shop for supplies for FREE! Teachers can shop for free books, school supplies and teacher resources for students in their classrooms.

According to their website, the non-profit was set up by a substitute teacher after a special interaction with a child.

Founder John Mika, retired autoworker, was working as a substitute teacher in urban and suburban Catholic schools and saw the difference in classroom supplies when comparing city to suburbs.  After a young boy at a Buffalo School ran up to John with a runny nose, he searched the teacher’s desk for a tissue and couldn’t find any.  He gave the boy his handkerchief and decided that every child deserved the same access to supplies, regardless of where they attended school.  John opened The Teacher’s Desk store in October, 2011 and together with a wonderful volunteer team has since distributed more than $10 million of product to teachers at schools in need throughout Western New York.  A box of facial tissue is the very first item each of the 6,000 teachers that will shop this school year receives for their students in need.


The store is open to teachers who teach at schools where at least 70% of the students participate in the Federal Free or Reduced School Lunch Program.

The Teacher's Desk are always looking for donations and sponsors too!