PARMA, Ohio — A school bus here served as a kind of Santa’s sleigh, filling up with gifts and other goods for local families in need.
Parma City School District held its second annual “Stuff the Bus” event on Dec. 2. School bus drivers and other staff members volunteered for the effort to gather unwrapped toys, new clothes, nonperishables, and monetary donations.
The Stuff the Bus drive benefits families who are in need of assistance in the three communities that Parma City School District serves: Parma, Parma Heights, and Seven Hills. The district has an enrollment of nearly 11,000 students.
“Everyone gets really excited to be a part of this wonderful event this time of year,” said Angelo Caputo, the district’s director of transportation. “It’s really that feel-good aspect of this that everyone really enjoys.”
Caputo and Kira Karabanovs, director of family and community engagement, started the district’s Stuff the Bus initiative last year. The Parma Area Family Collaborative also takes part in the effort, which has benefited hundreds of families.
“Last year and this year combined, we were able to help out between 380 and 390 families that were in need for the holidays,” Caputo said.