Seven school buses.
That’s how many vehicles carrying school supplies pulled onto the grass field behind the Mosley Performance Learning Center on Sunday evening, where about 20 volunteers from Communities in Schools (CIS) Cape Fear were waiting to unload them.
The buses came from several different locations around the area, including the Walmart in Porters Neck, the Office Depot on Oleander Drive and Port City Community Church. They were filled with bags full of notebooks, glue sticks, crayons, pencils, pens, binders, rulers, backpacks and anything else a student could need throughout the school year. All of the items were purchased and donated by shoppers and members of the church as part of the annual “Stuff the Bus” event that occurred this weekend.
Last year, more than $60,000 worth of supplies were collected and distributed to students in need in both New Hanover and Pender counties. Though the total amount for this year won’t be known until later in the week, Louise Hicks of CIS Cape Fear said it’s most likely surpassed last year’s mark.
“It certainly feels like there’s more this year,” said Hicks, who’s been doing the event for 13 years. “We really crushed it on Friday and Saturday, but it’s hard to tell how well we did [on Sunday].”
The event is held annually on the first weekend of August, when the state lifts the sales tax on all back-to-school items for three days. In addition to providing supplies for at-risk students, CIS chapters across the country provide other resources to help reduce drop out rates. For more information on CIS Cape Fear, visit the group’s website.