Many kids across the South Plains are just starting to enjoy their last weekend of the summer, for most school starts up again on Monday. The South Plains Food Bank has been collecting school supplies for the last couple of weeks, and on Friday they started the distribution.
More than 200 people lined up outside of the South Plains Food Bank on Friday morning. School supply packets were divided by grade level and passed out to families in need.
"There are a lot of kids in the area that don't start school with the pencils and paper that they need and they get behind, so we have been collecting school supplies, so today we are starting to distribute those school supplies," said Executive Director of the food bank David Weaver.
Nicole Benitez has four kids all under the age of the six and says this drive has really helped her family.
"It helps me a lot, because right now we are staying in a hotel, so they kind of consider us as homeless, so this helps me a lot right now," said Benitez.
Weaver says this summer has been especially hard on a lot of families.
"People are really appreciative of it, especially in times of high fuel prices, and people are stressed anyways and then you add the cost of this summer on," said Weaver.
The Stuff the Bus drive plans on distributing 4000 supply packets this year, about 400 more than last year.
"It's hard to buy school supplies, I mean it's cheap, but when you don't have money it's hard, and people like this, it helps a lot," said Benitez.
People say they are really appreciative of the help the annual drive provided.
"I want to say thank you for everything they are giving me, and God bless them for it," said April Perez.
"Thank you very much, because without them, they wouldn't have anything for school right now. Monday school is going to start and they didn't have anything right now, so I really appreciate it, I really do, and I know my kids do to," said Benitez.
And the South Plains Food Bank employees say they are really impressed with everything the community has donated.
"We give away, what we have been given, but Lubbock has been fantastic about coming to the assistance in people of need, whether it's school supplies or hunger, or so many other ways," said Weaver.
After about a half hour, the drive ran out of backpacks, so they are still accepting and are in need of donations. You can drop off supplies or make a donation online, and if anyone is in need of school supplies, you can talk to your counselor or principal and they can get you signed up.
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