ANTIOCH, Calif. (KRON) — Free backpacks, school supplies and COVID-19 vaccinations.
Saturday’s 9th annual “Stuff the Bus” school supply giveaway helped hundreds of families in Antioch.
For many students, school starts next week.
Shopping for school supplies has been stressful for families in Antioch.
“We all know with the pandemic — its even more harder,” Isabel Gaspar said.
That’s why the 9th annual “Stuff the Bus” school supply giveaway held at the Somersville Towne Center Saturday came at the right time.
“Honestly, it’s a blessing to not have to worry about going to the store and buying them,” Daja Eddie said.
San Diego State University student Claryssa Wilson founded the event when she was in the sixth grade.
Due to the pandemic and increased demand, the bus was not stuffed…
Instead, supplies were handed out inside the mall and in the parking lot for those who did not want to share space indoors.
Wilson says she was able to purchase enough backpacks and supplies for 5,000families.
“We just basically raid Wal-Mart, Target, Office Depot and purchase all the supplies with all of the monetary donations that we’ve collected,” Wilson said.
This as some students return to class for in-person instruction for the first time in more than a year.
“It is such a relief for me and I think for a lot of other kids that are struggling to get supplies for school,” Koleon Stevenson said.
Contra Costa Health Services also set-up a pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the mall. Anyone 12 years of age or older could walk-up for a shot.
75.2% of eligible Contra Costa County residents are fully vaccinated.
But active cases are up 60.5% the past two weeks.
Hospitalizations up more than 33%.
Antioch has reported the highest number of positive cases the last 14 days and the city has the fifth lowest percentage of fully vaccinated residents at 61.6%.
“The more people that get vaccinated, the less likely we’re going to have to do back virtual learning,” Wilson said.
“Wash your hands when needed to. Apply hand sanitizer,” Adeboye Adeyemi said. “Wear your mask — doesn’t matter if you’re vaccinated or not. Just be safe.”
Safe for everyone’s sake.