BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - For most, Thanksgiving is about memories of family, football, and most importantly, turkey. But, for those experiencing homelessness, it may seem like just another day. In the spirit of giving, over 75 students from the Gov. Livingston's InterAct Club stayed after school on Tuesday to make 800 sandwiches for the Market Street Mission out of Morris County. The Market Street Mission assists individuals to overcome homelessness, addiction and poverty.
Proceeds from the club's candy sale helped to purchase the supplies for this annual project, as well as generous donations were collected from Stop & Shop, Shop Rite, Kings, Mountainside Deli and Subzone -- and bread was donated from staff and teachers.
"I feel extremely grateful for what I have," said Interact Club officer Katie Lazzaro. "It makes you realize what you have in life is good enough. There are some people that just want enough to sustain their life."
This is a club favorite because it helps the community and the kids are active in helping, said club advisor Doreen Ladinski.
This service based club is active throughout the school year by participating in the Make A Wish Walk in the fall, volunteering at the Rotary Club Annual Pancake Breakfast, helping with special needs adults through the YMCA, and they will be visiting the Hillside Food Bank in February...just to name a few of their efforts.
Through their bi-annual candy sale, they also donate to Operation Smile and adopt a student from Ecuador to aid in health and educational costs. Each year, the club members choose an international cause to support and this year they will donate to Water.org, an organization that "helps turn a life of poverty into a life of possibility by providing water and sanitation to the world," according to Water.org website.
The Berkeley Heights Rotary Club has sponsored the InterAct Club for over 25 years. Today, there are over 130 InterAct Club members; it's the largest student organization at GLHS.