United Way of Fort Smith Area Fill the Bus school supply drive goes virtual

Democrat Staff
Booneville Democrat

United Way of Fort Smith Area announced last week that their 16th Annual Fill the Bus school supply drive will go virtual.

Fill the Bus is a community-wide school supply drive covering four counties in Arkansas and two counties in Oklahoma. You will not see volunteers out at local Walmart stores this year, but United Way is committed to continue providing school supplies for students in need. The help of the community is needed to make this event a success.

Fill the Bus started last week and goes through Aug. 10. There are three ways to donate that allow you to make a contact-free donation while continuing to support local children as they start back to school.

You may donate by texting “schoolbus” to 41444, online at unitedwayfortsmith.org, or by using the Walmart Registry For Good. You can find the “Registry for Good” on Walmart.com. Choose the United Way of Fort Smith Area and the supplies can be shipped to the United Way of Fort Smith Area office. The supplies will be distributed to the local school districts.

If you make a monetary donation you have the option to choose a specific school district you want that donation to be directed by choosing a school district from the drop down menu.

“For the last 15 years the Fill the Bus school supply drive has provided area students with the supplies they need to get their year off to a great start,” said Eddie Lee Herndon, President and CEO of the United Way of Fort Smith Area.

Herndon added, “Even though the COVID-19 pandemic is making our efforts a little more difficult this year, we are committed to a very successful school supply drive with our virtual Fill the Bus.”

With the uncertainty facing parents, teachers and school administrators this school year, a donation to Fill the Bus is one way that the community can show their support.

“We will miss our volunteers and the face to face visits with our donors.” said Mitzy Little, Marketing Director, United Way of Fort Smith Area. “Every year we hear stories from donors of how they have received help and they want to pay it forward.”

United Way of Fort Smith Area has been connecting people with resources in the River Valley since 1928. Counties in our service area are Sebastian, Crawford, Franklin, Logan in Arkansas, and LeFlore and Sequoyah in Oklahoma.