A “free child safety and wellness event” is being held this weekend by the United Way of White County, according to Executive Director Nan Tucker.

The organization is inviting children to “Be a Hero Meet a Hero” at the Searcy Event Center, 1306 Higginson St., from 5-7 p.m. Saturday, Tucker said. “We are excited. We are going to have all sorts of vehicles out there for the children to explore from first responders, such as the fire trucks, police vehicles. We’ll have construction vehicles out there.”

Tucker said the fire department will have an obstacle course for the children and the police department was working on an activity to offer them also. Different agencies and organizations will have booths set up to offer games and activities at their tables. Information on safety and wellness will be available for the families who attend.

This is the second year for this event. It was first held in 2019, but it was not held because of the COVID-19 pandemic last year.

A new addition for this year will be the incorporation of three to four food trucks. While food is available for purchase, the event itself is free, Tucker said.

The United Way is also preparing for its “Stuff the Bus” initiative. The nonprofit is accepting school supplies for families in need in White County.

“All the donated supplies benefit the eight public school districts in White County,” Tucker said. “Last year, we were able to successfully raise over 24,000 school supplies so we are hoping to meet and exceed that this year because the need is great.”

Stuff the Bus collection will continue through the July and ends Aug. 4. “We do have a collection day event July 30 from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m.,” Tucker said. “People are invited to drop off school supplies and receive a free hot dog lunch. We would love for people to come out and join us at Spring Park.”

Tucker said basic school supplies are needed such as pens, pencils, markers, notebook paper, notebooks and glue sticks. “We are really looking forward to help provide. That cost is a high cost, especially for those who are struggling economically right now.”

Stuff the Bus donations may also be dropped off at the United Way office at 106 N. Spring St. from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday through Friday. There are also two online options to purchase items for the benefit. These are Amazon’s Wish List and Walmart’s Registry for Good. The items will directly ship to the United Way office, Tucker said.

The United Way of White County may be reached at (501) 268-7489. The Facebook page is United Way of White County. It contains more information on the Stuff the Bus event.

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