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Gavin DeGraw Teams up with Goodwill for 2019 Bag It Up For Goodwill Challenge

Bridgeport, Conn. (April 1, 2019) — Today, Goodwill of Western and Northern Connecticut (GWNC) launched its 2019 Bag It Up for Goodwill Challenge, an annual donation competition among Connecticut elementary schools for prizes including a private performance by Grammy nominated multi-platinum recording artist Gavin DeGraw.

“The Bag It Up for Goodwill Challenge enables the public and area school children to take an active role in contributing to the greater good of our region,” Vickie Volpano, President & CEO of Goodwill of Western and Northern Connecticut, said. “Their generous donations make our communities stronger by providing supports for people with disabilities, economic disadvantages, and other barriers to employment.”

The 2019 challenge runs today, April 1, through April 30, and encourages all elementary school communities in the GWNC service area to participate. Donations made at participating Goodwill locations will enter registered schools to win the grand prize of $1,000, NORA’s Cupcakes for the entire student body, and a performance by Grammy nominated multi-platinum recording artist Gavin DeGraw, who is known for songs such as “Not Over You,” “I Don’t Want To Be” and “Chariot.” Second and third place prizes of $500 and $250, respectively, will be awarded. Winning schools will be announced May 8, 2019.

GWNC, one of 161 regional Goodwill organizations in the U.S. and Canada, is devoted to empowering individual independence and success through opportunity. Since its inception, GWNC’s Bag It Up challenge has inspired Connecticut residents to donate hundreds of thousands of pounds of clothing and household items.

The 2018 challenge saw more than 5,400 people donate approximately 365,000 items, which generated revenue to assist 1,592 people with their job search needs. Nearly nine school buses of items were kept out of Connecticut landfills. Last year’s winning school (JFK – Milford) donated 58,940 items.

“We’re excited to see how the students will engage their communities in support of this year’s Challenge and to treat the winning school to a performance by Gavin DeGraw,” Volpano said. “The more goods they collect, the bigger the impact we can collectively make in the community.”

To register an elementary school for the 2019 Challenge, donate on behalf of a school, engage your community, and review all challenge rules, visit


Goodwill makes it easy for individuals, businesses, and communities to come together to support people with disabilities, economic disadvantages, and other barriers to employment. Every time you drop off clothing and household items at Goodwill, you are contributing to a greater good. Every time you shop in our stores and purchase a value-priced item, you are filling a need beyond your own. Last year, Goodwill of Western and Northern Connecticut (GWNC) helped 2,604 Connecticut residents find work. GWNC is headquartered in Bridgeport and has store, donation, and career center locations across the region.