Corporate Volunteer Council Does it Again
Irving School Students Recipients of Back-to-school Clothing
The Corporate Volunteer Council of the Volunteer Action Center of Valley United Way has run another successful Back to School Clothes for Kids project. This year, 104 students at Irving School in Derby received their very own box of new clothing to begin their school year. The goal of the project is to provide new clothing to underprivileged children at the start of the school year. Nationally, statistics show that many children in need miss the first few days of school simply because they do not have new clothes to wear. The hope of the Council is that by providing the children with clothes and school supplies that they will be encouraged to do their best while receiving a boost to their self-esteem
Children were greeted by members of the Council along with cookies and lemonade donated by Dave Grant Catererís. Balloons donated by the Valley YMCA with the helium donated by Valley Medical Supply adorned the boxes in the gym at Irving School. At the end of the event the children received an ice cream treat of their choice from an ice cream truck provided by Pitney Bowes in Shelton.
These students received two new outfits, a coat or jacket and a backpack full of school supplies such as pens, pencils, paper and colorful markers. The Corporate Volunteer Council is a coalition of local businesses and corporations that have an active employee volunteer involvement program. The Corporations that participated in this yearís Back to School Clothes for Kids were: American Skandia, Ansonia Rotary, APPLICA, Ascom Hasler Mailing Systems, A.T.S., CAPS, Inc., Carterís, Valley Chamber of Commerce, First Union Bank, Dave Grant Catererís, Griffin Hospital, Iroquois Gas Transmission, Junior Achievement, Manufacturing Information Network Group, Market Data Retrieval, Naugatuck Savings Bank, OCI Chemical, Pitney Bowes Credit Corp., Professional Travel Planners, Prudential Resources, Rifkin Travel, Inc., Staffworks, Staybridge Suites, The Hartford, United Illuminating, United Methodist Homes of CT, Valley Parish Nurse Program, Wal*Mart-Shelton, Valley United Way, and Valley YMCA.
The Back to School Clothes for Kids project is a favorite with the Council members. "At Pitney Bowes, we want to improve the quality of life in both the communities where we do business and where are employees live. The Back to School Program affords us that opportunity," said Denise Rawles-Smith, Manager of Diversity and Community Outreach at Pitney Bowes Information Based Solution. "The attendance of the children on the first day of school, attest to the fact that the program is a success. Individual employees and departments understand the value of this program and rally together to make a difference in the life of a child. Who knows, one day this child could be part of the Pitney Bowes family. Our employees have shared the reward of this experience," stated Ms. Rawles-Smith.
American Skandia employees, who adopted 28 children, have been a strong supporter of this project for many years. " Our employees look forward to this every year. They really go all out when it comes to helping the children. The program is one that I feel the company really believes in and will continue to support in the future," said Colleen McDermott, Communications Specialist, American Skandia.
As Nichole Sauter, Senior Communications Specialist for American Skandia stated, "I was very moved when shopping for the child I was assigned. Giving money to a charity is one thing, but when you take the time to go shopping for a specific child and you know the name, age, favorite color and favorite character, the reason you are doing it becomes very real. Iím glad I could help her in her upcoming school year."
In the past six years, the Corporate Volunteer Council has clothed approximately 660 children in the Valley community through this program. The Council provides these children the opportunity to grow and feel confident as well as stressing the importance of education.