“Pack the Bus,” a donation school supplies package is underway at the local Hy-Vee in Perry. Sacks of school supplies are filled for both St. Patrick’s elementary students and PCSD elementary students, following a $10.00 donation at Hy-Vee.

The bags are divided up between the two schools depending upon the enrollment, and bags are also gifted to the Food Pantry.

“Those three places get bags of school supplies that they can distribute because there’s kids that show up to school without the supplies that they need,” Larry Vodenik, Hy-Vee’s Community Involvement and Event Coordinator

Once filled, sacks of supplies are taken and placed inside the school bus parked alongside Hy-Vee. The goal of the program is to pack as many school supply donations into the bus before the beginning of the school year.

“Some of the bags are different, but there’s the basics: pencils, notebooks, school glue, notebook paper, markers, crayons, and elementary-school stuff,” Vodenik said. “We give more to the elementary school because they have more enrolled.”

The program has been giving back to students for 10 years, Vodenik says, and typically begins around the time of the Iowa State Fair. Donations this year will be collected and placed into the school bus until Thursday, August 18, as the school needs to have the bus back.

While the bus won’t be present, donations for the school supplies will be taken up until the first day of school on Wednesday, August 23.