United Way of Hernando's 17th Annual Stuff the Bus

DATE: July 24, 2023

Angie B. Walasek, CEO Angie@UnitedWayHernando.org
Justine Peppe, CID Impact@UnitedWayHernando.org   


Hernando Residents Successfully “Stuff the Bus”
Community Comes Together to Support Teachers


Spring Hill, FL – Every summer, United Way of Hernando County places school buses throughout the community at participating Publix and Walmart stores for their annual Stuff the Bus. This education initiative focuses on providing local teachers and their classrooms the tools needed for the new school year. School bus locations are manned with dedicated Hernando teachers and volunteers to collect donated school supplies for Hernando County classrooms.


Over the course of the July 7th Stuff the Bus weekend, teachers from 21 Hernando schools and other community partners volunteered their time and collected over 5,751 lbs. of school supplies to be distributed back to local classrooms.
This included over 2,027 boxes of crayons, 2,102 highlighters, and 2,869 glue sticks, and so much more.
Returning volunteer and local Pine Grove Elementary School teacher, Tasheba Kimble shared, “I think that Stuff the Bus is a great way to raise awareness for my classroom needs, but more importantly my student’s needs. Because of this initiative, teachers can ensure that their students are fully prepared with the supplies necessary to have a successful school year!” Ms. Kimble explained, “It’s such an amazing way for residents to connect with teachers face to face, and directly hear about their classrooms.” Altogether, volunteers logged 420 hours between collecting donations at Publix, and unloading, sorting, counting, and dividing up the items at The Parent Academy the following week. Additionally, the community collectively raised $6,757 in monetary donations to purchase additional special request items for the dedicated teacher volunteers and their classrooms throughout the 2023-2024 school year. “It’s heartening to see the community come together to support such an important cause,” teacher Tasheba Kimble added. “Education is a fundamental right, and every child deserves the opportunity to learn and grow. United Way’s Stuff the Bus supply drive is a fantastic way to ensure that the children in Hernando County have access to the resources they need to succeed in school, despite their background.”


Studies show that teachers spend an average of $750 of their own money each year on classroom supplies and needs. United Way Executive Director Angie B. Walasek stated, “We have close to 1,600 teachers in our Hernando School system and this is exactly why this event remains a priority for our team. If we can alleviate even the slightest cost burden for a teacher by providing folders, a backpack, or composition notebooks so they can in return provide them to a student who’s in need of the basics, then that is exactly what we’ll continue to do.”


Thank you to United Way’s Partners in Education: Publix Super Markets for continuing to support the needs of local classrooms; Walmart Supercenter on US19 and Distribution Center in Brooksville for their donations; Hernando County Transportation for coordinating the pickup and drop off of the school buses to the stores; The Parent Academy for advocating during this year’s event; and to all Hernando County School Board teachers, United Way Partner Agencies, community partners, and Hernando County residents for continuing to LIVE UNITED and supporting Hernando’s Annual Stuff the Bus.


United Way of Hernando County, Inc.:
United Way of Hernando County (UWHC) was established as a 501c3 organization in 1987, and since then has continuously focused on creating partnerships and mobilizing our community to seek sustainable solutions to some of the most pressing local needs.  UWHC strategically allocates Community Investment Funds in Health, Education, & Financial Stability programs with proven results and local impact. UWHC works hard to balance the growing demand for basic services such as food, utilities, and rent assistance, with our ongoing commitment to tackling the underlying causes of complex issues. United Way partners with businesses and organizations that share our vision for improving lives through the power of collective impact and working together. Our support for long-term commitments are essential to addressing key social issues, such as helping children, youth, adults & elders, encouraging health and wellness, including physical and emotional care, promoting financial stability and self-sufficiency, and crisis intervention. For more information on how YOU can LIVE UNITED, visit