Help provide school supplies to homeless students

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United Way of Pioneer Valley’s Stuff the Bus

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The school year is right around the corner and one organization is launching a program to help provide school supplies to those in need.

United Way of the Pioneer Valley announced that the “Stuff the Bus” program will bring school supplies to all homeless students in Hampden, Granby, and South Hadley. Backpacks that include pencils, pens, paper products, folders, a binder, and more will be donated to around 1,400 students in the community.

“United Way of Pioneer Valley has long been a leading investor in our children’s futures, and we are all so proud to build on our hard, crucial work with a stronger-than-ever Stuff the Bus for 2021. Last year, even in the middle of the pandemic, we were proud to reach a new milestone – delivering school supplies to all students who are homeless in our service area. Stuff the Bus was able to shine in the face of adversity, and we intend for it to keep shining,” said Paul Mina, President & CEO, United Way of Pioneer Valley.

This program is supported by sponsors, drop-off space contributors, and volunteers from the following:

  • PeoplesBank
  • Bank of America
  • Holyoke Mall
  • Fontaine Bros.
  • Westfield Gas & Electric
  • Balise Auto Group

“PeoplesBank is proud to support the United Way of Pioneer Valley’s Stuff the Bus program,” said Matt Bannister, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Responsibility for PeoplesBank. “Helping students who are homeless in our region start on a level playing field with every other child is the right thing to do.”

“Don’t forget, the kids we’re providing for are homeless kids. So, it’s not just any child. And the kids are already behind the eight ball. They’re already homeless,” said Executive Director of United Way Paul Mina.

They are looking for the following supplies to be donated:

  • No. 2 pencils
  • Colored pencils
  • Markers
  • Index cards
  • Erasers
  • Binders
  • Paper
  • Crayons
  • Highlighters
  • Pencil cases
  • Pens
  • Glue sticks
  • Composition books
  • Rulers
  • Pocket folders
  • Post-it notes
  • Spiral notebooks
  • 3-ring binders (1”)
  • Pencil top erasers
  • Hand-held pencil sharpeners
  • Loose-leaf notebook paper
  • Rulers

Donations can be made at the following locations:

  • Holyoke Mall 50 Holyoke Street, Holyoke, MA 01040
    • Upper level: Target
    • Lower level: Macys
  • Fontaine Bros. 510 Cottage Street, Springfield
  • Westfield Gas & Electric 100 Elm Street, Westfield
  • Bank of America
    • 1724 Boston Road, Springfield
    • 1316 Carew Street, Springfield
    • 638 Memorial Dr, Chicopee
    • 734 Bliss Road, Longmeadow
    • 225 Memorial Ave, West Springfield
    • 40 Lincoln Street, Holyoke
    • 144 Main Street, Northampton
    • 1 S Pleasant Street, Amherst
  • Balise Auto Group 440 Hall of Fame Avenue, Springfield
  • Balise Ford of Wilbraham 1979 Boston Road, Wilbraham
  • Balise Honda of West Springfield 400 Riverdale Street, West Springfield
  • Balise Hyundai 683 E. Columbus Avenue, Springfield
  • Balise Kia 603 Riverdale Street, West Springfield
  • Balise Lexus 1385 Riverdale Street, West Springfield
  • Balise Mazda 733 E Columbus Avenue, Springfield
  • Balise Nissan of West Springfield 500 Riverdale Street, West Springfield
  • Balise Toyota 1399 Riverdale Street, West Springfield

The event runs until August 16th and the backpacks will be distributed on August 23rd.

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