On Saturday, December 12, 2009, the Fort Hamilton Army Base held its annual holiday party for the families of military personnel who protect our country, both here and abroad. When Lenny D’Ambrosia of the Parkway East KiwanisClub, heard about the party and its need for toys, he alerted the Marine Park Intermediate School Builders Club.
Principal Debra Garofalo gave her full backing to this project, and the Builders Club sprang into action. Staff and students gave generously to the December drive resulting in over $1000.00 (USD) worth of new toys being collected in just three weeks.
Most impressive was the generosity of the school’s sixth grade, led by Assistant Principal Frank DiFranco and Dean Ester Cohen. These two organized a Pajama Pants Day in which each student and teacher of the sixth grade donated $1 for the privilege of wearing PJs to school. They collected nearly $500.00 (USD) in just one day. They then went on a shopping spree at a toy store and delivered the gifts to school in time for Saturday’s party.
“Even thought times are difficult for many this holiday season, the spirit of giving is alive and well at Marine Park Intermediate School. Many of the students donated their own money to help others this holiday season. This is typical of the type of student we have here at Marine Park Intermediate School.” said Regina Kieran, the faculty advisor for the Builders Club.
A food drive to benefit City Harvest upon returning to school in January is just one of the events the Builders Club is planning for the New Year.