When shopping for school supplies, pick up extras for the “Fill the Bus” campaign

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- If you've been to a store lately, you can't miss them -- school supplies are out and on sale. But not all families can afford to buy new school supplies for their kids. That's where the United Way and the community comes into play.

The United Way along with help from other volunteers is helping the "Fill the Bus" campaign. "Fill the Bus" boxes will be placed at stores around southeast Wisconsin and are meant to encourage you to donate new school supplies. Those supplies will be distributed to families with children that cannot afford to buy all that is needed to have a successful year in school.

"It's so good to see the kindness and the good that's going on in our community," said Lori Hayes, Director of Community Volunteering with United Way in Waukesha County.

This is a special program in the eyes of Walmart manager Olga Line. Years ago, it was her getting the help from United Way.

"Being excited for school knowing I have all new school supplies and not hand me downs. Smelling the fresh crayons and getting all my pencils ready," said Line.

United Way plans to fill 2,000 backpacks with school supplies to be handed out on August 23rd. Applications to receive a backpack filled with supplies are due on Thursday, July 31st.

IMPORTANT: To qualify for the program, families must be eligible based on income guidelines. The opportunity to receive a backpack is available by filling out a form at the following sites through July 31, 2014: Salvation Army in Waukesha County and local food pantries (Waukesha, Pewaukee, Mukwonago, Muskego, and Oconomowoc).

For more information on how you, your church, community group or workplace can hold a backpack and school supply drive, to schedule a drop off time, to volunteer, or for further information, contact us at 262-226-7420 or BackPackCoalition@gmail.com.