"Stuff The Bus" Campaign Kicks Off In Schuylkill County

By Andrew Forgotch | aforgotch@pahomepage.com, Nick Hughes | nhughes@pahomepage.com

Published 07/01 2014 05:30PM

Updated 07/02 2014 12:08AM

Norwegian Township, Schuylkill County - The van that sits right in the middle of the Fairlaine Village Mall was empty when Eyewitness News saw it on Tuesday morning.

Michelle Halabura, director of community relations at Schuylkill United Way, hopes it won't stay that way much longer.

"The windows are cracked and we are asking people who come to the mall to donate small items," she said. "Pens, pencils, paper whatever they can."

The van is in the mall as part of Schuylkill United Way's annual drive to get school supplies for children in the area.

The drive started Tuesday and continues all month.

"We hope that when the driver comes on the 31st they can't see out the front window," Halabura said. "We would love to see as many as supplies as possible."

One of the people who will be donating is Amy Burd, who lives in Lewisburg.

Burd told Eyewitness News that she's been in a situation where she was on the receiving end of a similar drive. She said she knows how much the stuff the bus campaign means.

"I know what it's like to not have the funding or whatever it is the children need," Burd said.

Burd also has two children of her own so she also knows how it's important to have the necessary school supplies.

"Some school districts don't provide it," she said. "Some expect you to get the kids crayons and there maybe a family that doesn't have the finances to do so."

On the van is a list or organizations the drive helps.

Halabura believes kids who get the donations will go to school with a smile on their face.

"I think the idea of stuff the bus really is that we want all kids regardless of anything to be able to feel like they're entering and prepared," she said. "That's the bottom line."

Items can be dropped off inside the vans at the Cressona Mall, Fairlane Village Mall, or at the Schuylkill Mall.

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