Giving Back

South Plainfield Teachers Launch OLOVEE, A Company Dedicated to Giving Back

South Plainfield Middle School teachers and OLOVEE founders Monica Beshara, Meredith Garofalo, and Cheryl Hughes.
Proceeds from each item sold by OLOVEE will go back to the purchaser's cause of choice.
Nicole Sottiriou wearing the black OLOVEE unisex t-shirt in support of community recreation.
South Plainfield Middle School graphic arts teacher Ms. Kanaley is wearing a black slouchy OLOVEE t-shirt in support of youth advocacy.
The unisex T-shirt is available in black or white with a choice of logo design and cause color. The color violet represents animal rescue.
The women's slouchy T-shirt is available in black or white with a choice of logo design and cause color. The color green represents community recreation.
The women's boxy T-shirt is available in black or white with a choice of logo design and cause color. The color blue represents youth advocacy.
The women's boxy T-shirt is available in black or white with a choice of logo design and cause color. The color red represents family aid.
The unisex T-shirt is available in black or white with a choice of logo design and cause color. The color blue represents youth advocacy.
Black or white T-shirts featuring logo of choice and gold lettering representing all four causes are also available.
For each purchase, OLOVEE – unity threads ‘four’ your community will donate $4 to one of four South Plainfield causes.

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Earlier this year, three South Plainfield Middle School (SPMS) teachers added entrepreneur and philanthropist to their resume with the launch of a for-profit company that gives back to the community.

OLOVEE – unity threads ‘four’ your community, run by middle school teachers Monica Beshara, Cheryl Hughes, and Meredith Garofalo, sells trendy products that represent and support four local causes: community recreation, family aid, youth advocacy, and animal rescue. A percentage from each purchase will go back to the South Plainfield community, with the purchasing choosing the cause of choice.

“We offer products that give back to an individual, personal causes and provide people the opportunity to know where the money is going because it is staying local,” said Garofalo, a physical education teacher at SPMS and gymnastics coach at the high school. “This way, you choose what you want to represent, who you want to donate to, and know exactly where that money is going.”

Sign Up for E-News

Hughes, a former coach and current physical education/heath teacher at SPMS, added, “When I found out this was going to be for charity and would help other people, it was something I wanted to be a part of. We are a company that is going to help people in our community.”

“I'm extremely excited for our start-up company because of its unique vision to help your own community,” said Beshara, a math teacher at SPMS.

Currently, OLOVEE (pronounced olive-e) offers three different styles of T-shirts (unisex, slouchy, and boxy) each bearing the company’s logo. Shirts are available in black or white with logo colors depicting the cause of choice – green for community recreation; orange for family aid; blue for youth advocacy; and violet for animal rescue. For each shirt purchased, OLOVEE will donate $4 to the buyer’s cause of choice; there are also shirts with teal and gold logos through which money will be dispersed among the four causes.

“What is special about OLOVEE is that we strive to reach your own home or your neighbors. We want to help a mom who is struggling to enroll her child in a recreational sport, a teenager who is having problems with drugs or suicidal thoughts, a family who has the desire but not the means to rescue a puppy, or a child in need of an emergency prescription,” said Beshasa. “These are just a few of the common cases we see in our daily surroundings, and are also just a few of the circumstances that OLOVEE can help.”

In selecting the causes to support, OLOVEE’s founders conducted an online survey, gathering input from friends, family, and colleagues of all ages. “We wanted to do something different and more personal and select causes that aren’t as widely fundraised for and give people a choice,” said Hughes, a physical education and health teacher at SPMS. “Sometimes, different things mean different things to other people. We are trying to reach everybody.”

In time, the goal is to expand OLOVEE’s product line and offer an online shopping option that provides purchasers the opportunity to dedicate their donation to causes and organizations beyond the borough.

“Although this company will hopefully be all over we are beginning our journey in South Plainfield, the place that we all feel at home,” Garofalo said. “We coach here, we teach here, we know the kids and families here. Being teachers and coaches in this town has lead us to meet and love so many people, so why not direct the funds back here first?”

“As teachers and coaches, we see kids who come in and they don't have much,” said Hughes. “Some may need help to buy clothes or lunch. There is a connection and you start seeing what the actual needs are.”

The OLOVEE name, though not an acronym, does include the word ‘love’ and the company’s logo features an olive branch. While OLOVEE is not designed to be political in any way, Garofalo said its concept did evolve during last year’s presidential campaign.

“Back then it felt like everyone was arguing, no one was listening to one another, and no one was agreeing to disagree,” she said. “Nothing was coming out of it and we just started talking about what we could do. We came up with the idea to create a company where we can all meet in the middle without compromising beliefs but, at the same time, make a difference.”

Garofalo added, “Whether we agree or disagree, we can make a difference, extend an olive branch and come together to do good and give back on a local front.”

T-shirts featuring the OLOVEE logo with an accent color representative of one or all four of the causes will be available for purchase at the annual community picnic, which will take place on the grounds of South Plainfield Middle School immediately following this year’s Labor Day Parade. Shirts are $24 to $28 and, for each one purchased, OLOVEE will donate $4 to the local cause of choice. The company accepts cash and checks and can also email invoices to customers looking to pay by credit card.

“We are new and have a lot to learn and grow and figure out but we are slowly on our way to accomplishing what we set out to do,” said Garofalo. “We are looking forward to getting the word out, meeting residents of the borough, and letting people know who we are and what we represent.”

“We hope that people see the positive influence OLOVEE can have so that we receive the support we need to reach as many homes as we can throughout our OLOVEE journey,” Beshara added.
For more information on OLOVEE – unity threads ‘four’ your community, stop by their vendor table on Labor Day, follow them on Facebook at, or email

TAPinto South Plainfield is South Plainfield’s only free daily paper. Sign up to get all the news as it happens at and follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @SoplainfieldTAP.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield


South Plainfield – John T. Felz, Jr., 71, passed away at his home on Thursday, June 14, ...
Read more

Letters to the Editor

South Plainfield Special Athletes Have Great Showing in This Year's State Games

June 22, 2018

Tyler is one of many athletes from South Plainfield who competed in this year's State Games, held at the college of New Jersey. This was Tyler's third year competing, but the first year where Tyler won a gold medal in, in both the long jump and mini javelin. We are proud of all the athletes who represented South Plainfield and the coaching staff.

Community Happenings

Mayor, Council Proclaim 'Amateur Radio Week’ in the Borough of South Plainfield

June 22, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ- At a June 18 meeting, South Plainfield Mayor Matt Anesh and the Borough Council proclaimed June 17 through June 23 as ‘Amateur Radio Week’ and asked all residents to extend their appreciation and respect to the community’s  amateur radio operators.

South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club (SPARC) will be participating in the American Radio Relay ...

South Plainfield Elks Honor Students of the Month

June 18, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - On Tuesday, June 12, the South Plainfield Elks honored the winners of the Grant School Character Education Monthly Pillars.  The students and their families were treated to a pasta dinner cooked and served by the Elks Youth Activities Committee and the students were given Junior Citizen of the Month Certificates.

The winners were as follows: 

Caring – ...

Holy Savior Academy’s Championship Cheerleaders Seek Funds for New Equipment

June 18, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The Holy Savior Academy Cheerleading Squad has kicked off a fundraiser to generate $5,500 for the purchase of much-needed equipment, such as new tumble mats, sound equipment, and more for the award-winning squad.

“The group of twelve girls range from 1st through 4th grades,” said parent Marybeth Parache, who is heading up efforts to raise funds.  ...

Wrestling Ring Presentation

June 20, 2018

The South Plainfield High School Wrestling Team,  who have earned the title of “Three Peat Champs”,  received their State rings on Sunday, June 10, 2018.  Presentation of the rings an plaques were given by SPHS Wrestling Coach Pavlack an assistant coaches.   Funding  for the rings were donated by the South Plainfield Wrestling Club,  who has been one of ...

Inclusive Playground Ribbon Cutting Tonight - June 20

Nixle Alert - Official ribbon cutting at 6:30 om tonight to open inclusive playground at Willow Park.  All are invited to attend, A special storytime will follow.

Upcoming Events


Sun, June 24, 1:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. Southern Maryland Blue ...


Tue, June 26, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...


Wed, June 27, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...


Thu, June 28, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Somerset Patriots vs. New Britain Bees Baseball ...


Fri, July 6, 7:00 PM

TD Bank Ballpark, Bridgewater

Road Warriors vs. Somerset Patriots

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink Sports


Weinberg, Diegnan Bill to Establish University-Based Consortium on Media Innovation Advances

TRENTON –A bill sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg and Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Patrick Diegnan that would establish a state university-based consortium to advance research in the field of media and technology was passed from the Senate Higher Education Committee today.

“The state’s traditional newspaper market has been upended by changes in ...

South Plainfield and SP BOE Working Together to Strengthen School Security

South Plainfield, NJ - On Monday evening the Borough Council hired two new police officers. These hiring’s will allow two additional police officers to be stationed at South Plainfield Public Schools and will supplement the already strong security measures enacted by the Board of Education and the South Plainfield Police.

The hired officers are part of an interlocal agreement ...


The South Plainfield Public Library will be open this Sunday, June 24 from 1:30 PM – 5 PM.  This is the last Sunday the library will be open until September.  During July and August, the library will be closed on Sundays, but the rest of the hours during the week will remain the same.

Come join us Monday, June 25 at 6:30 PM for Monday Night Movies.  The selection this week ...

Suburban Woman’s Club Ends Its Year with a Big Banquet

Our country has a long and rich history of service clubs contributing to the growth of their communities but there have been signs in the past two decades that interest in these groups is waning.  Not so at Suburban Woman’s Club of South Plainfield.  Thanks to the efforts of Membership Chair Grace Bertucci, this past year seven new members joined this relatively small group of ...

Press Releases


June 22, 2018


The Borough of South Plainfield has issued the South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club(SPARC) a Proclamation at Borough Hall, on June 18,2018 at 7 PM.

The Proclamation is honoring the annual ARRL Amateur Radio Week, June 18th through June 24th and the amateur radio operators nationwide for their public service to the ...

Cool Ways to Save Money This Summer

As the summer temperatures rise, home cooling costs rise as well. But there are ways to help save money without sweating the heat:

To increase your cooling system’s efficiency by as much as 20%, get it checked out for summer.  A technician will clean the condenser, make sure you have the optimal amount of refrigerant, and ensure the airflow over the coil is ...