Stuff the Bus this summer to help needy children - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Stuff the Bus this summer to help needy children

Decorated displays resembling school busses have been placed at three Walmart stores to accept school supplies. (Photo source: WLOX) Decorated displays resembling school busses have been placed at three Walmart stores to accept school supplies. (Photo source: WLOX)
The United Way of Jackson and George Counties started its Stuff the Bus campaign today. (Photo source: WLOX) The United Way of Jackson and George Counties started its Stuff the Bus campaign today. (Photo source: WLOX)
The donations will be picked up by school districts in Jackson and George Counties on July 31. (Photo source: WLOX) The donations will be picked up by school districts in Jackson and George Counties on July 31. (Photo source: WLOX)
SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) -

When you go shopping this summer, two groups are asking you to toss some school supplies into your cart to help families in need. Monday marked the first day for the Stuff the Bus School Supply Drive. The program got off to a great start last year, and two groups are hoping to beat their goal this summer.

Walmart employees in Pascagoula and Ocean Springs dropped off the first donations. A bright, yellow display at the entrance of the store caught the attention of shoppers.

"What is this for," one curious shopper asked as he noticed what looked like a cute little school bus.

The United Way for Jackson and George Counties and Walmart launched the Stuff the Bus donation drive. Last year, the campaign collected more than 1,000 pounds of school supplies.

"This year, we're hoping to beat 1,000 pounds. We hope all districts will have an adequate amount of supplies on hand for the children when they return to school in August," said Susan Lamey, Communications Manager for the United Way for Jackson and George Counties.

"Would you please make a small donation," Carolyn Brown asked each shopper who walked by her.

Brown played a big role by collecting cash donations for the cause. The Walmart door greeter knows the need in the classroom. She worked as a teacher's assistant in the Moss Point school system for more than 28 years.

"I like children, and I like to know that I may have played a part in our new president one day. I may have contributed a pencil to our new congressman, who knows? It's all about giving," said Brown.

What people give will be distributed to all five school districts in Jackson and George Counties.

"There are a lot of things they have on the list, and a single household parent can't afford everything. So, anything you all would and could and will donate will be greatly appreciated," said Brown.

"It feels real good, and this fine lady here is doing a great job. She's very pleasant, and she has a sense of humor, too," said Ed Allender, of Pennsylvania.

He put some money in the donation jar.

"I believe in doing that. Plus, I have five kids. I raised five kids, so I know what it is to have kids and responsibilities and also needs," Allender said.

Those basic tools for school will end up in the hands of children in need.

"It felt good, because you're giving other people supplies for school," said 9-year-old Kaylease Morse.

"I was a pediatric nurse years ago, so I have a heart for that. I want to help the children," said Susan Gaston, of Alabama.

"There's always a need. We have families out there that are struggling just from day to day expenses and cost of living. So, for someone to contribute the basic school supplies and classroom supplies would really make a difference in someone's life," said Lamey.

You can drop off donations at Walmart stores in Ocean Springs, Pascagoula and Lucedale, as well as Singing River Federal Credit Union and Navigator Credit Union. The Stuff the Bus drive ends July 31.

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