The start of the new school year is just weeks away, and the Kiwanis Club of Greater Brandon is preparing by hosting its fourth annual Kiwanis Stuff the Bus program to benefit needy school children in the community.
This year the club will partner with the Brandon Family YMCA for a kick-off event at the YMCA, 3097 S. Kingsway Rd., Seffner, Aug. 4 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event will feature Star Wars characters, food, games and information booths. The Shred-It truck also will be on hand to shred sensitive documents that can be used for identity theft.
Admission is $5 worth of school supplies or $5.
According to Kiwanis board member Dustie Amatangelo, proceeds from the event will be divided between the Kiwanis Stuff the Bus effort and the YMCA's annual back-to-school giveaway at Camp Cristina in Riverview.
Anyone interested in having a booth at the event can contact Diana Niles, development coordinator at the Brandon Family YMCA, at 813-685-5402. The cost is $25.
Residents also are invited to join the Kiwanis Club Friday, Aug. 17 from 7 to 9 a.m. at Kmart, 1602 W. Brandon Blvd., to help stuff a school bus with school supplies.
Volunteers are needed at Kmart to collect donated school supplies, said Amatangelo. Or residents can volunteer at Cornerstone Baptist Church, 818 N. Parsons Ave., Brandon, where school supplies will be sorted and distributed to local schools between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m.
"Anyone who would like is invited to come out and help us," said Amatangelo.
Prior to Aug. 17, school supplies can be dropped off at the following locations:
- Apostle's Lutheran Church, 200 Kingsway Rd., Brandon
- Courtesy Toyota, 9210 E Adamo Dr., Tampa
- Budget Self Storage, 2504 E. State Road 60, Valrico
- Ben's Family Restaurant, 704 E. Brandon Blvd., Brandon
- Cornerstone Baptist Church, 818 N. Parsons Ave., Brandon
- Maximeyes/Dr. Gress, 2547 E. State Road 60, Valrico
- Nativity Catholic Church, 705 E. Brandon Blvd., Brandon
- Chili's, 1281 E. Brandon Blvd., Valrico
- Aquali Salon and Spa, 3652 Erindale Dr., Valrico
- Chick-fil-A, 11325 Causeway Blvd., Brandon
- Pinch A Penny, 3210 Lithia-Pinecrest Rd., Valrico
- Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce, 330 Pauls Dr., Suite 100, Brandon
- Music Showcase, 402 Oakfield Dr., Brandon
- RME, 4910 Savarese Circle, Tampa
- Sykes, 900 W. Beacon Rd., Lakeland
- Brandon Family YMCA, 3097 S. Kingsway Rd., Seffner
- Tampa Tribune, 202 S. Parker St., Tampa
School supplies needed include:
- Copy paper
- Composition books
- Notebook paper (wide and college ruled)
- Back packs, large and small
- No. 2 pencils
- Spiral notebooks (single subject)
- Pocket folders (with and without clasps)
- Crayons (16-pack)
- Markers (8-pack)
- Colored pencils
- Scissors (blunt and regular)
- Glue (regular and stick)
- Hand sanitizer
Amatangelo said, over the past four years, the Stuff the Bus program has raised more than $25,000 and served more than 500 children. She added that all donations go to local schools for needy students who come to school unprepared.
The Kiwanis Club meets every Thursday at 8 a.m. at Ben's Family Restaurant, 704 E. Brandon Blvd., Brandon.