HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Hartford families got extra help with their back-to-school shopping Friday morning. A hundred different organizations and vendors helped the Back-to-School Extravaganza live up to its name. The idea is to give families everything they need for the back-to-school season.

“It’s not just about the free backpacks and the free school supplies,” said Denise Drummond, General Assembly’s Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity & Opportunity policy analyst. “We also have free food here. There’s medical services, dental services, free mammograms.”

The CWCSEO puts this together in Dunkin’ Park with the nonprofit community group Angel of Edgewood.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people couldn’t work and lost money. Over the past couple of years, inflation has increased the price of everything, so back-to-school shopping has never been more expensive.

“Sometimes I could end up spending over $100 in the store,” said mother, Daneisha Jumpp. “That’s on books, crayons, it’s something.”

The founder of Angel of Edgewood sees that every year, even at the end of every month, when government food money runs out.

“The need is still great after the pandemic,” said Angel of Edgewood founder & CEO Jendayi Scott-Miller. “Food prices are still increasing, and families are struggling.”

Helping hundreds of families feels so good to the people coordinating this.

“I get goosebumps right now,” CWCSEO Policy Director Werner Oyanavel said. “You can see them because it impacted me. The need for those families, and they are looking for something like this, for the community to respond to their needs.”

Many of the groups actually provide resources to fill those needs year-round.