Stuff the Bus

What is Stuff the Bus?

Stuff the Bus is a countywide drive to provide new school supplies for students living in or near homeless conditions in Monterey County. These students are living in shelters, motels, sheds, garages, cars, and other places that are not meant for human habitation.

In 2020, Stuff the Bus Program Distributed 4,520 Backpacks to Students in Need!

This year, UWMC will modify the Stuff the Bus program to comply with social distancing protocols and will eliminate collection sites for school supplies. Monetary donations are requested instead to purchase new school supplies that will be distributed to family resource centers. Additionally, volunteer participation will be limited to ensure the health and safety of all program participants. 

Why Is Stuff the Bus Important?

2020 homeless data indicates that there are over 9,986 local students living in homeless conditions. This number is likely to continue to climb due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, it is more important than ever that we support our local students and their families. Backpacks are distributed throughout the county via the Family Resource Centers located in each school district, in partnership with the Monterey County Office of Education. Read the FAQ's.

The number of students facing homelessness in Monterey County has more than tripled over the past seven years. It’s more than a backpack, Stuff the Bus eases the financial burden on families and gives children a boost of self-confidence. These students often struggle in school. Of homeless elementary students, only 28% are proficient in reading and 17% in math. Many drop out without earning a high school degree.

How Is Homelessness Defined?

Homeless children are defined as those "who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence." Examples that fall under this definition:

  • Sharing overcrowded housing because of economic hardship

  • Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or campgrounds due to lack of alternative accommodations

  • Living in emergency or transitional shelters

  • Children and youth whose primary nighttime residence was not designed for human habitation (e.g. backyard tents, garages, park benches, etc.)

  • Those living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations<

  • Migratory children and youth living in any of the above situations

Sponsor Stuff the Bus 2021

Stuff the Bus eases the financial burden on families with school-aged children who are homeless or nearly homeless. It’s more than a backpack. Invest in a sponsorship and help students succeed in school.

Stuff the Bus Sponsors

UWMC Tax ID Number: 94-1322169.