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WeLoveU Delivers 2,000 Books to Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital

WeLoveU Delivers 2,000 Books to Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital

WeLoveU’s Book Drive for the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital hopes to provide the youth with a story they can each treasure and call their own.

In the month of January, WeLoveU was abuzz spreading the news about their month-long book drive for the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital. For the children and young adults who come near and far for treatment, they turn to books for courage, strength, and hope. This is especially true after speaking to Amy Glazer, Executive Director of Development, at the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital at Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center.

“Books are used for distraction during medical procedures, and reading promotes relaxation during stressful times. The Child Life team at the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital focuses on maintaining development during a child’s hospital stay. Reading is an important component in this mission,” says Amy Glazer. 

The hospital, outfitted and designed for the care of children aged from infancy to young adulthood, goes through plenty of books for their youthful patients to peruse. Each patient is allowed one book of their own to keep, from the time they check in the hospital until the time they return home. With the numerous families seeking care and treatment for their loved ones, the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital could certainly use a helping hand themselves.

All Hands on Deck!

The WeLoveU Foundation put out a call to collect books for the children’s hospital, who provides each of its patients a book they can call their own. The goal at hand: collect 2,000 new children’s books. For the whole month of January, WeLoveU partnered with Barnes & Noble, sharing the book drive with neighbors, friends, families, and city officials.

The month-long drive garnered support from Hackensack Mayor John Labrosse (top left), Radio Hall of Fame DJ Bert Baron (top right), and more than 140 WeLoveU volunteers whose workplaces also participated by donating books. A donation even came through AmazonSmile from India!

With an overwhelmingly positive response and meeting their goal, the WeLoveU Foundation couldn’t wait to see the final result.

World Read Aloud Day

In the midst of the book drive, WeLoveU volunteers celebrated World Read Aloud Day on February 1, 2019. On this day, people around the world read aloud together and share stories advocating for literacy as a human right, which belongs to all people.

WeLoveU volunteers visited and read to children in the Princeton Young Achievers program in Princeton, New Jersey. It’s a unique after-school program at the YMCA that aims to improve students school performance and English language skills.

Lisette, a WeLoveU volunteer who read to the students said, “It’s a great opportunity to give back to the community in this way. I enjoyed reading aloud to the children today. Not only did we share a story, but we were able to share happiness and emotions between one another. Seeing the children smile and have fun in this way made me feel accomplished.”

Delivery!

On Thursday, February 7, 2019, WeLoveU volunteers packed all 2,000 books and drove them over to the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital for the big delivery.

A group of volunteers on-site helped set up the boxes and books for the group photo. Hospital personnel attending the book drive delivery included Vice-chair of Pediatrics Dr. Stephen Percy, Executive Director of Development Amy Glazer, Supervisor of Child Life Ellen Goldring, and Child Life Specialist Erika Bella.

The Vice President of the WeLoveU Foundation East Coast Region, delivered a brief speech on behalf of the organization. For some of the hospital staff, it was their first time hearing about WeLoveU and its mission. While others recognize us from the 2017 Toy Drive for the children’s hospital. 

Final Thoughts

“Having a donation of 2,000 books will provide many children and their families opportunities to escape from the stress of being in a hospital and read a good book together,” said the Executive Director of Development.

When asked about his thoughts were about the WeLoveU Foundation and their book drive, Dr. Stephen Percy (right) responded with a laugh saying, “Let’s do this every week!”

He continues saying, “I think its tremendous. What we do is not only share the books with them, but let them go home with books. I always tell parents the best thing you can do with your kids is read to them. This is a terrific start to have the resources to allow us to do that. Thank you very much for what you do and keep doing it. You’re making a difference in the world every day.”

Thanks everyone who participated, the book drive was a great success. The WeLoveU Foundation looks forward to having more events like this, working together to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals that were set in 2015. This event in particular is a step closer to fulfilling Goal #4—Quality Education.

 

Fifty WeLoveU Volunteers Tidy up North King Street in Virginia

Fifty WeLoveU Volunteers Tidy up North King Street in Virginia

Cleaner City, Cleaner World!

The start of every year is full of vitality, new opportunities, and most commonly—resolutions. It’s the same case for the International WeLoveU Foundation East Coast Region. In 2019, WeLoveU is planning and mapping out fresh and new ways to positively impact the global family. In spite of new ideas, there’s nothing like WeLoveU’s roots of carrying out volunteer service.

More than 50 volunteers from various backgrounds joined together to tidy up the streets of Hampton, Virginia. In this worldwide effort to raise awareness about environmental protection, volunteers targeted a one-mile stretch along North King Street.

The volunteers working joyfully cleaned the area thoroughly and collected more than 200 bags of trash. The debris collected at this year’s cleanup ranged from items like bottles and mattresses to old tires and file cabinets, just to name a few. The total estimated weight of the debris from the cleaning frenzy is more than 7,000 pounds.

One Step at a Time

This cleanup was in partnership with the Hampton Clean City Commission and the Hampton Police Department. A local news station also supported the team by broadcasting WeLoveU’s efforts. By working with local agencies, WeLoveU can have better insight into the needs of the community. As a result, volunteers can work towards the same goal and work in unity.

All the participants hope to inspire neighbors and families locally and globally to make any and every effort to maintain a cleaner city and overall—a cleaner world. A cleanup of this size may be seen as small compared to the vast amount of land there is to clean. However, to WeLoveU volunteer’s, they’re motivated to help even in the slightest way.

Through these efforts, they’re working towards environmental protection in five main areas: clean water, oxygen, region, life, and descendants. These components make up the Clean WORLD Movement that WeLoveU has been working on for many years. This movement also works towards fulfilling the United Nations SDGs, specifically Climate Action, Life Below Water, and Life on Land.

WeLoveU Volunteers Kick-Off 2019 with Albemarle Road Cleanup

WeLoveU Volunteers Kick-Off 2019 with Albemarle Road Cleanup

It’s Go Time!

Tasked to clean their region, more than 30 volunteers in Charlotte, North Carolina set out to conquer their first cleanup of 2019. On January 20, the group of volunteers, who prepared to clean despite the cold weather, met on Albemarle Road.

The busy intersection in East Charlotte showed signs of heavy littering.  The volunteers walked the mile-long stretch on Albemarle Road. Along the way, they picked up debris from glass, plastic bottles, to remains from previous car accidents. In total, they filled up more than 20 bags of trash.

They lightened the neighborhood by removing trash from in between the bushes, the grass, and from the street curbs. The path they walked on Sunday in unity, paved the way for a greener neighborhood.

All of their efforts are in order to beautify the streets of Charlotte while creating a cleaner and safer environment. This volunteer service activity also caught the attention of local residents. Given the high volume of drivers, residents asked the group what they were doing exactly.

Cleaning One Area at a Time

Essentially, the WeLoveU participants were taking the first steps in purifying the world. The WeLoveU Foundation tackles five areas in environmental protection: clean water, oxygen, region, life, and descendants.

Each facet is equally important to maintaining a Clean WORLD. In fact, the Clean WORLD Movement is WeLoveU’s worldwide initiative to raise awareness of the importance of environmental protection in the face of climate change.

Volunteers across the board enjoyed participating in this activity. The weather in Charlotte ranging between 40-50 degrees could not deter them from accomplishing what they set out to do. A local TV station also aired the volunteers Sunday afternoon cleanup.

Cleaning up the local streets is no trivial deed. A beautiful community is only possible when we make efforts to clean our neighborhoods hand-in-hand. Whether it’s cleaning streets, parks, or public facilities, WeLoveU encourages family and neighbors alike to participate in environmental cleanups.

WeLoveU Volunteers Adopt Comfort Tyler Park in Syracuse, NY

WeLoveU Volunteers Adopt Comfort Tyler Park in Syracuse, NY

Since adopting Comfort Tyler Park, WeLoveU volunteers collected 62 bags of leaves, 30 bags of weeds, and shoveled five inches of snow.

Syracuse—a city tucked in the corners of New York State—is home to the Erie Canal Museum and its well-known educational institution, Syracuse University. The city frequently implements new programs to better the lives of its residents and the community. One of those programs is the Clean-up ‘Cuse Trash and Litter Program, otherwise known as the “Adopt-a-Block” program.

Earlier this year, Mayor Ben Walsh announced the program to inspire residents to pick up trash year round. This sparked the interest of local WeLoveU volunteers who feel strongly about serving their neighbors through volunteerism. The group adopted Comfort Tyler Park in July that’s nestled by Comstock Avenue and East Colvin Street. Adopting a street or park requires monthly cleanups for two years.

“Make this world better, we’ve got this together!”

Since its adoption, WeLoveU volunteers visited the park to clean and maintain it regardless of the weather conditions. Because of the changes in season, volunteer’s tasks varied as the park required different types of maintenance. For example, in the summertime, volunteers picked up trash, pulled up weeds, and laid down fresh mulch. Meanwhile, in the fall, the group raked up leaves and shoveled snow in late November. Before cleaning, volunteers huddle and cheer together saying, “Make this world better, we’ve got this together!”

Thirty WeLoveU volunteers cleaned Comfort Tyler Park for the first time on July 22, 2018. Teams split up to pick up litter, remove weeds, and lay fresh mulch. A handful of volunteers traveled from Watertown and Rochester, New York.

Volunteers are seen removing trash intertwined in fences and removing dead branches on August 26, 2018. This effort is part of WeLoveU’s Clean WORLD Movement, making a pleasant and bright environment for neighbors.

More than two dozen volunteers were raking leaves and pulling up weeds on the playground in the fall. Volunteers typically spending 2 hours at each cleanupA local TV station covered the volunteer’s efforts.

WeLoveU volunteers braved the cold weather to shovel five inches of snow for the safety of the community. Unexpected snowfall in November covered the sidewalks encompassing Comfort Tyler Park.

During the last cleanup of 2018, volunteers diligently raked up leaves. Mayor Ben Walsh and Maria Maldonado-Lewis, the Director of Constituent Services, stopped by to greet the group. Read more about this cleanup on Localsyr.com.

WeLoveU Visits #BrightHaiti Solar-Lantern Recipients

WeLoveU Visits #BrightHaiti Solar-Lantern Recipients

Visiting Vocational Students Who Received Solar-powered Lanterns Through the #BrightHaiti Project

After donating 3,000 solar-powered lanterns to students from the Warf Jeremie Vocational and Technical Training Center in May, the WeLoveU Foundation touched base with the students who received them. WeLoveU is already in the midst of planning phase two of the Bright Haiti project to improve students lives and progress their education. 

A Spark of Change

The results were incredible and the feedback from the students was promising. They expressed their gratitude to the foundation and Chairwoman Zahng Gil-jah for thinking of them and providing a solution for a problem they face daily. Many students mentioned how the lanterns have become a vital source of light for them at night.

It increases their productivity after sundown whether to complete schoolwork or other activities. It also positively impacts their families lives and the community directly. They can travel to the outer cities where there is little to no power with their lantern to visit their families. Some even choose to send their lantern as a gift to less fortunate family members who have no access to electricity at all.

“Thank you, WeLoveU Foundation! I can now stay later at school to finish my homework and use my lantern to light up the path to go back home when it gets dark,” said one student.

I study accounting. I want to thank WeLoveU for thinking of CEFPROTEC for the distribution of the lamp. We used to have so many difficulties to study or run our regular errands around our neighborhood.

Because electricity is so rare in Haiti, it was difficult for us to walk around, especially at night and function well. This lamp changed our whole lives and represents so much for us.

The lamp helps us study even in groups. We help other people in the area so they can benefit from the lamp as well and we are sometimes 10 people studying together with the lamp.

I’m from the countryside, and when I have to go there, I always take the lamp to do my chores. When I get to the countryside, many people congratulate me on such a beautiful gift. I don’t have the words to express my gratitude towards WeLoveU for such an incredible gift.

Wismail Pierre Louis

Like this, many good reactions came out from the students who were thankful for the brighter future they can now have because of these solar-powered lanterns.

I am studying accounting and English. Before the lantern, I always had difficulty studying, especially at home since in Haiti we don’t have much electricity. Now that I have this lamp, it is very useful to me. This lamp helps my household. When we didn’t have electricity before, we had to put candles out every day. Now with the lantern, we no longer need candles.

We want to thank the WeLoveU Foundation so much. Not many foundations do such great work or think about us, and we want to truly thank WeLoveU on behalf of CEFPROTEC university.

Tony

Sharing a Mother’s Love by Spending Time with Students and Donating School Supplies

Upon hearing such touching stories, the WeLoveU Foundation organized a light show with the students and prepared to donate schools supplies such as notebooks, pencils, and pens to each of the participants to further encourage their education.

Thus, on Sunday, October 28, 2018, 100 of the best students from the Warf Jeremie Vocational and Technical Training Center gathered together. They stood in formation spelling “WeLoveU” while holding up their lanterns towards the night sky shining brightly.

After the light show, students were treated to snacks and beverages. Then, WeLoveU distributed the school supplies as well as warm meals for each student to enjoy. They served the students with the love of a mother as it’s one of the foundation’s core teachings.

The students were excited to participate in the event and were very thankful to receive materials to facilitate their education.

“This foundation is very different. All of you are always smiling and so kind. Thank you WeLoveU for thinking of us and our needs when we feel sometimes abandoned by our own country,” said another student.

The principal also shared his gratitude towards the foundation and looks forward to collaborating with WeLoveU again in the future.

I am a student at CEFPROTEC. They say that gratitude is the memory of the heart. So we want to take this time to thank the founder of WeLoveU for thinking about us. Often when we come home, there is no electricity and we cannot work. Since as students, we always have so much homework and research, it was difficult to study. Thanks to the lantern, our lives became much easier and now we are able to do what was impossible in the past. In the name of all students at CEFPROTEC, we want to take this time to thank you so much for thinking about us. We hope that we will hear from you soon again and share many great things together.

Clemard Junia

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