The Junior Woman’s Club  recently held its Safety Village program, a comprehensive and fun safety education program for children entering kindergarten in the fall at Hilltop Country Day School. The program was run again this year by Lucy Lubertazzo and Sonja O’Connell, both Junior Woman’s Club members. “We both love this program and believe in the value it provides the community. We were excited to run it again this year.” commented Sonja.

A Community Effort

In its 26th year, the program featured many in the community who generously donated their time to educate and entertain the children.  With 80 children, 50 volunteers and 12 presenters, this program truly embodies the adage, “It takes a village to raise a child”.

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Dr. Christian Canzoniero and Dr. Rajesh Raman of Wellness Pediatrics gave a lesson on hand washing and nutrition. Karate Academy of Andover taught an interactive lesson about bullying and stranger danger.  Dr. Parker of Andover Animal Hospital demonstrated how to approach a strange dog when the owner is nearby.  Smokey the Bear stomped out forest fires with the N.J. DEP Forest Service.  TransOptions of Cedar Knolls showed kids how to navigate the streets and stressed the need to wear a bicycle helmet.

As in previous years, parents of the participants were given the opportunity to volunteer to help escort the children to the safety presentations. “I really enjoyed being a group leader and watching the children participate in the various activities that the organizers of Safety Village provided each day,” stated Sara Mikrut, whose child participated this year.

Local businesses also got into the community spirit by providing donations. Sparta Pharmacy and George J. Lubertazzo, D.C. generously provided monetary contributions as well as fun items for the children to take home at the conclusion of the program. Weis, Target and Stop & Shop provided snacks and drinks for the four-day camp.  All proceeds from Safety Village will be donated back to the community by the JWCS.

For the fourth year in a row, Hilltop Country Day School donated the use of their facility for the four-day program. The Junior Woman’s Club is grateful for their generosity and partnership in putting on yet another successful Safety Village program.

JWCS is comprised of women from Sparta and surrounding towns who have come together as friends to foster goodwill and hold events and activities to bring the community together. Each year the JWCS raises and distributes thousands of dollars to local organizations and charities. Visit us at www.jwcsparta.org