This has been the ninth year of Stuff the Bus, a project in which students at Williams Field collect enough canned food and nonperishable food items over the course of one month to “stuff a bus.” Items are donated to the United Food Bank in Mesa.
The first big event will be “Trunk or Treat” on Wednesday, October 30. There will also be a big collection day at Basha’s on Higley and Elliot on Saturday, November 2 from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Last year, the Black Hawks collected about 12,000 pounds of food, along with $4,000 in cash donations for the food bank to use to buy fresh produce and meat products.
Williams Field Spanish teacher Alison Wood runs the Stuff the Bus program and is very excited for what the upcoming year has to offer. She said the students want to exceed last year’s collection and gather at least 12,500 pounds of food, plus more cash donations.
Food collections will end around November 20. Students will help deliver the food to United Food Bank on November 26, right before Thanksgiving.
“We do it during this time of year because of the holidays,” Wood said. “They kind of run low at the food bank, so we try to supply them for the holiday season.”
The students really get a kick out of being able to help feed people and see just how much food they can gather.
“When the teachers really get into it and are encouraging the students, they like to bring in whatever amounts they can,” Wood said. “My favorite thing is to just see how stuffed it really is because it looks so big and empty at the beginning. It’s amazing to see what can be done and what we can collect in four weeks.”