Washington Township schools support staff donates food products to Mother’s Cupboard

Staff stuffs a bus with food products for a local food bank

Anthony Mazziotti The Sun/ Washington Township Schools Supportive Services Personnel Association members Charisse Ford, Roberta Kelly, and Joanne Fernandez at the Stuff the Bus event on June 6

The Washington Township community was in the giving spirit on June 6 as members of the Washington Township Schools Supportive Services Personnel Association held their bi-annual “Stuff the Bus” event to support a local food bank.

The WTSSSPA is the district’s support staff, comprised of teaching assistants, food service workers, custodians, etc. These workers are also members of the New Jersey Education Association, the union for teachers and staff.

Three members of the WTSSSPA sat in the nine-10 parking lot of Washington Township High School, on the corner of Ganttown and Hurffville-Cross Keys roads, from 1:30 to 7 p.m. accepting donations and loading them onto a school bus. Joanne Fernandez explained the goal of “Stuff the Bus” and the WTSSSPA.

“As members of the NJEA, we go out to the community to show them that support staff is an integral part of the community as well as the teaching staff,” she said. “We go to events like homecoming and Super Saturday to give gifts and meet parents.”

At those events, members like Fernandez will have parents sign a sheet with their email and address so they can be reminded when events like “Stuff the Bus” occur.

The food bank the WTSSSPA donates to bi-annually is Mother’s Cupboard, located at 523 Egg Harbor Road. It is only open one day a week, every Thursday from 9 a.m. to noon. It is open one evening a month, every fourth Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m.

Once the event wrapped up at 7 p.m., the bus was driven to Mother’s Cupboard and unloaded.

“They [Mother’s Cupboard] tends to get a lot of donations from churches around November and December,” Fernandez described. “So we hold our two events in February and June to get them ready for summer.”

The WTSSSPA received a lot of donations, including canned goods, peanut butter, jelly, mac and cheese, toiletries, cleaning supplies, laundry supplies, school supplies, paper products, baby products, snack items and juice packs. Cash and gift cards are accepted, but Mother’s Cupboard will give gift cards to families to supplement milk and dairy products.

“One thing we try to do is give back,” Fernandez said.

For more information on how to donate, call (856) 589–0520 extension 254.