Children received backpacks stuffed with school supplies, enjoyed activities and a free lunch as part of the organization's" Back to School Party."
Families started lining up in front of the Durham Rescue Mission on E. Main Street around midnight to ensure they would get to take part in the event.
Organizers said they expect to give away over 4,000 backpacks and serve 10,000 hot dogs.
Ernie Mills, founder and CEO of the Rescue Mission, has said the back to school event is a blessing to many families who are struggling.
"Our goal, as always, is to provide children with the tools they need to get excited about going back to school, all of which is possible because of our generous sponsors and tireless volunteers." he said.
ABC11, along with GlaxoSmithKline, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, and other groups help sponsor the event.