For 18 years, Susan Farris, the personnel manager for Walmart, has partnered with Franklin County Public Schools in an annual charitable event called “Pack the Bus.”
The goal each year is to pack a school bus as full as possible with materials students need to start school off right. The supplies donated stay in Franklin County. After each school has received its donation, the administrators and teachers distribute the supplies to students in need.
Walmart provides additional money so teachers can purchase any items they still may need. This year Walmart raised more than $6,000 for local schools.
“It’s amazing how everyone comes together to support the community,” Walmart’s store manager Corey Goins said. “And this wouldn’t be possible without Susan. I just came out to help.”
“Pack the Bus” is held every year and gives the community a chance to come out and help those in need.
“Many times we take it for granted that students come to school with supplies,” Franklin County Public School’s Director of Instruction Brenda Muse said.
Many shoppers made donations, including long-term giver Linda Catatts. Catatts donates a basket full of supplies each year.
“I don’t do this to get the recognition,” Catatts said. “I do this to help the kids. I could have been one of these kids when I was growing up.”
“Walmart has really been a leader,” Muse said. “We want the community to know that we really appreciate their donations.”
Even though Pack the Bus has ended for this year, charitable contributions can still be made to help any student in need. Donations can be made at the school of your choice or by dropping by the central office on Bernard Road.
“We really just want to thank everyone in the community for their support,” Farris said.