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United Way, The Big Bus and COTA Mobilize the Power Of Community to Expand Tutoring Services

February 23rd, 2024

The Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) is donating a retired COTA bus to The Big Bus, a local nonprofit supporting under-resourced immigrant and refugee students and families. The Big Bus initially planned to raise funds for a second bus but found a significant opportunity for expansion through a collaboration with United Way of Central Ohio. 

As the backbone organization of Success by Third Grade, a community-wide movement to address nonacademic barriers to learning, United Way is uniquely positioned to bring community partners together to solve issues. This partnership resulted in a donation from COTA that will allow The Big Bus to expand its services to support more students and families. 

“The donation of a retired COTA bus to The Big Bus is an example of how United Way of Central Ohio and Success by Third Grade are uniquely positioned to mobilize corporate and community partners to creatively solve for and meet the needs of our students in our partner school districts,” said Cheryl Wyatt, VP, Success by Third Grade. 

Tracy Davidson of Westerville, Ohio, founded The Big Bus in 2022 after encountering New American families at Abbey Lane apartments during a school board re-election campaign. Witnessing their struggles, especially in learning English and navigating the U.S. education system, sparked the creation of the nonprofit.

This partnership between COTA, The Big Bus and United Way of Central Ohio is a testament to the positive change that can occur when organizations collaborate to address the needs of students, families and communities.

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