PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The Peoria Fire Department leadership team on Wednesday donated $500 to the Tri-County Urban League for a school supply drive.

“Fill the Fire Truck”, a school supply drive for students attending Peoria Public Schools, is spearheaded by the Peoria Fire Department, Tri-County Urban League, Peoria Firefighters Local 50 and Peoria Afro-American Firefighters.

“Everyone jumped in feet first to make donations,” said Peoria firefighter Scott Howard. He came up with the concept and approached the Tri-County Urban League to make it a reality.

Howard, who graduated from Peoria Public Schools, said it’s a way to give back to the teachers who helped him, while setting students up for success.

“These people had such a huge effect in my life and to be able to help the students who are about to be there with them and give them one leg in the door or a step on the day school starts is just awesome,” he said. “We just want to step forward and step up, as public servants, and be able to give back to the community that made all of us who we are today.”

The Tri-County Urban League hopes to fill 6,000 backpacks for the students to be presented at their “Back to School Bash” on July 30.

Howard said they have raised $1,500 so far, including Wednesday’s donation.

On Saturday, fire trucks and firefighters will be outside Target and Walmart on University to accept school supply donations. Donations are also accepted at all Peoria fire stations and Tri-County Urban League.