More than a dozen school busses from the Stark County area dropped off over 29,000 pounds of food to the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank late Monday morning.
In support of the Foodbank’s Harvest for Hunger campaign, the inaugural “Hunger: The Bus Stops Here fundraising drive included over 50 volunteers who helped to unload 17 buses and one van that was carrying boxes of food for those in need.
“When you see a convoy of buses like this, yeah it’s big and impressive but it’s also, for me, a reminder that we’ve got a big problem to solve and it takes the whole community,” said Dan Flowers, president and CEO of the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank.
Among those helping Monday morning, Je’Rod Cherry who started volunteering with the Foodbank about three weeks ago. He’s a former NFL player and three-time Super Bowl champion with the New England Patriots. But on Monday, he was a champion in the local community.
“I’m like everyone else,” said Cherry, who now works as a sports talk show host on Cleveland's ESPN 850 WKNR radio. “I understand out there and if you have the ability and time to do something about it, be a champion and do something about it.”
In total, 29,296 pounds of food and $7,052 were collected at the fundraising drive. Officials said that equals to 52,621 meals for those in need. Students and staff at Stark County’s public school districts, and the Stark ESC’s member districts in Carroll, Summit, Tuscarawas and Wayne counties were involved in the event.
When asked if it was easier to transport food or kids, the answer from a Green Local Schools bus driver was straight forward.
“Silly question,” said John Brink with a smile. “Food. The food doesn’t holler at you or throw anything at you.”