Grand Island Public Schools' "Stuff the Bus" donation drive is once again helping students of all income levels get ready to go back to school.
Collection buses were parked Thursday and Friday at four major Grand Island retail stores to collect school supplies for students classified as homeless, and for others in need, like the many new immigrants that call the Grand Island area home.
"There might be a lot of minority families just recently coming here to the United States where stuff is different from back into their previous countries where they were from. So it's a total different experience for them. So parents might not know what supplies are really needed even if they do have the list for the school," explained Stuff the Bus collection volunteer Oneida Carrasco.
Officials say the money saved by students and their families also benefits the schools.
"Anything a child needs, a school will supply, but anything a child can come with, of course, allows the school to spend money on other things that can help enhance an education. So something as simple as a nineteen cent bottle of glue, when you're taking that times thousands, can all of a sudden be a "big buck" to buy a new textbook," Grand Island Public Schools Outreach Center director Verna Haberman said.
On the Stuff the Bus assembly line, volunteers fill donated backpacks with pre-assembled school supply kits, and a whole lot more.
Kits also include 3-ring binders, paper, and basic toiletries like shampoo and toothpaste so students will be able to sport a fresh look when the first school bell rings.
Stuff the Bus collection carts will be on site through the weekend at the Grand Island K-Mart, Shopko, and Walmart stores.