Event’s goal tripled after record-breaking success in 2016
(Austin, Texas) - Capital Metro, Whole Foods Market and the Central Texas Food Bank are teaming up for the sixth year to encourage the community to “Stuff the Bus.” The goal of the event is to help area residents by collecting meals for individuals and families in need during the holidays. The theme is of this year’s event is, “There's no place like hope for the holidays.” Watch this fun video about the “Stuff the Bus” food drive.
Last year, the food drive broke previous years’ records, far exceeding its 50,000-meal goal. This year’s goal is to provide at least 150,000 nutritious meals to those facing hunger. The donations will go to the Central Texas Food Bank, which works with nearly 250 partner agencies in 21 Central Texas counties to get food to those in need.
The event runs through the weekend of Dec. 8-10, when two Capital Metro buses will be parked at the Downtown and Domain locations all weekend, and smaller Capital Metro vehicles will be at the Arbor Trails, Gateway and Bee Cave locations on select days.
Buses will be open for donations from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily with volunteers on hand to accept food items. Monetary and product donations will also be accepted at all locations during regular store hours, and Santa Claus will be at the Domain and Downtown sites from 1:30-3:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 10. Austinites not able to attend the event can still make a donation, from Dec. 1-14, at all five Austin-area Whole Foods Market locations. This year for the first time, people can also make donations online through our website, at capmetro.org/stuffthebus.
“Capital Metro values the Central Texas community and appreciates the opportunity each year to lend a hand during Stuff the Bus,” said President/CEO Linda Watson. “We look forward to this event every year because it gives us another chance to make a real difference in people’s lives and to bring some joy to the community.”
“Whole Foods Market is proud to be a part of one of Austin’s most anticipated annual holiday traditions with its sixth year in participating in Stuff the Bus. It has been a wonderful partnership and we are happy to do our part to help feed those in need in Austin and surrounding community areas,” explains Laura Zappi, Southwest Region Executive Marketing Coordinator for Whole Foods Market.
The Food Bank encourages donations of healthy, non-perishable food items, such as canned meats like: tuna, stew and chili; canned vegetables; pasta and pasta sauce; beans; healthy cereals; non-fat dry milk powder and peanut butter.
“No one should go hungry, especially during the holidays,” said Derrick Chubbs, President & CEO of the Central Texas Food Bank. “We’re proud to partner again this year with Whole Foods and Capital Metro to nourish hungry people and bring hope for the holidays to our neighbors in need. Together, we’re hoping to provide more than 150,000 meals this year. So, come on out and help us stuff these buses!”
KIND bar, a Whole Foods vendor, is generously donating bars valued at $10,000 to the Stuff the Bus campaign. KIND Bars will be available while supplies last to individuals who bring their donations to the Cap Metro vehicles stationed at the Whole Foods Stores during the event weekend.
During the drive, donations will be accepted at any of the following Whole Foods Market stores:
- Arbor Trails (4301 W. William Cannon Dr.)
- Bee Cave (12601 Hill Country Blvd.)
- Domain (11920 Domain Dr.)
- Downtown Austin (525 N Lamar Blvd.)
- Gateway (9607 Research Blvd.)
There will be marked Central Texas Food Bank bins at all locations over the weekend.
The public can learn more by visiting capmetro.org/StuffTheBus or by following the Stuff the Bus campaign on Twitter with the hashtag #StuffTheBus.
There will be a media opportunity for interviews with representatives from all three partners on Friday Dec. 8, from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. at the Whole Foods Market Domain store. Please contact Peter Partheymuller, Capital Metro’s representative, to schedule an interview outside of these hours.
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ABOUT CAPITAL METRO
Capital Metro connects people, jobs and communities by providing Central Texans with safe, high-quality and sustainable transportation alternatives. The agency provides more than 30 million rides annually on its buses, trains, paratransit and vanpool vehicles and serves a population of more than 1 million in its 535-square-mile service area. The region’s transportation leader, Capital Metro has invested in high-capacity transit solutions like its High-Frequency Route Network and MetroRapid, which move more people, more frequently. Capital Metro is committed to increasing regional mobility and consistently innovates to bring new service to its riders. The award-winning CapMetro App was among the first mobile ticketing apps to allow riders to purchase tickets and plan trips. Visit capmetro.org for more information.
ABOUT WHOLE FOODS
For 39 years, Whole Foods Market has been the world’s leading natural and organic foods retailer. As the first national certified organic grocer, Whole Foods Market has over 470 stores in the United States, Canada and United Kingdom. Whole Foods Market has been ranked one of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” in America by FORTUNE magazine for 20 consecutive years. To learn more about Whole Foods Market, please visit media.wfm.com.
ABOUT THE CENTRAL TEXAS FOOD BANK
The mission of Central Texas Food Bank is to nourish hungry people and lead the community in the fight against hunger. Founded in 1981, the Food Bank provides food and grocery products through a network of nearly 260 Partner Agencies and nutrition programs, serving nearly 46,000 people every week. Headquartered in Austin, the Food Bank serves 21 counties in Central Texas, an area about twice the size of Massachusetts. For more information on the Food Bank and its programs, visit centraltexasfoodbank.org.