Lorain, Ohio – United Way of Greater Lorain County has concluded its annual Fill the Bus
school supply drive and distributed nearly 30,000 school supplies to 11 schools throughout
Lorain County. United Way partners directly with school districts to ensure children have
supplies waiting for them if needed, and to help prevent teachers from needing to purchase
supplies on their own.

In total, 47 businesses hosted collection drives at their facilities, a 52% increase from last year’s
participation. A few local companies that hosted collections include FirstEnergy, Lubrizol
Corporation, The Nord Center, and Lorain Public Library System among others.

“I am beyond thrilled with the turnout of businesses this year who wanted to support this
initiative,” said Colleen Walts, marketing and engagement director at United Way of Greater
Lorain County. “It’s refreshing to see corporations assisting the local community, and employees
that give so generously to aid our school children.”

In addition to corporate supply drives, volunteers rallied together to donate their time to the
cause. Fill the Bus volunteers helped collect, sort, pack, and deliver the highly needed items
while acting as the backbone for the program.

“It’s truly the volunteers that make the Fill the Bus program possible,” said Norma Sanchez,
volunteer engagement manager at United Way of Greater Lorain County. “This year we tracked
over 107 total volunteer hours just for the program which is incredible.”

This year’s drive surpassed last year’s numbers, when United Way received over 22,000 items,
distributed to 12 local school districts, and had 31 businesses running collections.

“We firmly believe all kids deserve the right tools to set them up for success,” said Ryan Aroney,
president & CEO at United Way of Greater Lorain County. “I’m happy that our community
supported us, and we’re able to help so many local children start the school year off with
essential classroom supplies.”

The school supply collection is a part of United Way of Greater Lorain County’s year-round
Collect.Sort.Deliver Impact Initiative through which volunteers collect and inventory high-need
items such as school supplies, books, and tampons and pads. The items are available for
distribution through local social service and educational agencies.

To learn more about the Collect.Sort.Deliver Impact Initiative, contact Norma Sánchez at 440-
277-6530 or norma.sanchez@uwloraincounty.org


United Way of Greater Lorain County leads community-wide innovation to tackle problems that
most people say can’t be solved. In unforgiving cities, overlooked townships, and seemingly
docile suburbs. We find every dollar we can to address them. But we are more than the
fundraisers. United Way brings together over 150 organizations to power 10 Community
Collaboratives. Together, we fight for the health, education, and financial stability of low-income
working families who need our help in Greater Lorain County. We have one life. To live better,
we must Live United. Learn more at uwloraincounty.org or by calling 440-277-6530.

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