AFSCME Members Help Make the Wheels of a Unique Bus Go Round

Thursday evening, a unique school bus started rolling around the streets of South Florida, and AFSCME members helped make it possible!

The Mobile School Pantry will hit the roads to visit area schools and distribute food to children and families in need. The bus is making a real impact by helping students to be able to concentrate on their school work instead of their hunger.

“It is really impressive to see how, with the right vision, something we see every day like a school bus can be remade and used for such a powerful purpose,” said AFSCME International Vice President and Local 199 President Se’Adoreia Brown.

Brown attended the event on behalf of AFSCME members who made the Mobile School Pantry possible with financial support through the process.

“Food is like's a school supply,” said Zeina Zein-Wolland, founder of Mobile School Pantry, the nonprofit that will run the program to get the bus to schools that are located in areas that lack easy access to grocery stores - areas called food deserts.

“You know, they don't eat pens, they don't need paper,” said Zein-Wolland. “They need food. Families are able to come straight to their school when they're already there. They don't have to drive that extra mile to get to a food pantry, or to get to a store. They can just come straight to their school where they're picking up their child, and they can also shop at the same time and take home food with them that they wouldn't have otherwise gotten.”

MSP is reliant on community support from groups like AFSCME, local farms, grocery stores and grant monies to fund the program.

“The more that awareness about Mobile School Pantry grows, the more people just know what they are doing, the more they can do,” said Brown. “After seeing how far they have come and the impact they are already having, I truly believe that we're going to see them add more capacity until one day every school in Broward County and Miami-Dade and Palm Beach will have been visited by this awesome bus.”