WOODLAND PARK, NJ - Jayden Perez, 9, who last year organized a toy drive that garnered over 1,100 toys and $10,000 for those affected by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, is working to continue his charitable endeavors.
He has been selected to serve on the 2018 kids board of directors for Kid Box, a clothing service that donates new clothes to children in needy families. Jayden is also helping the charity Action Against Hunger and will receive multiple honors for his philanthropic work in the next two months. He also was recently profiled in Maelle Kids Life, a global kids fashion magazine and community.
Jayden’s current effort is to collect and donate lanterns for the people of Puerto Rico. As it is hurricane season, he is worried they may lose power again.
“In a world that sometimes feels like it is full of cynicism and criticism, this young man is a bright spot of hope, caring and good,” said Mayor Keith Kazmark.
Last week, Jayden went to Kid Box in New York City to meet with the board and the company leaders and work on projects. On his behalf, Kid Box will be sending clothes to the charity Jayden picked, Oasis-A Haven-Women & Children in Paterson, as well as a 2-year-old girl whom lost her father in New York due to gun violence. Kid Box is also giving Jayden $10,000 worth of clothes, which he is donating to those in need in Puerto Rico. “School will be starting soon,” Jayden said, ”and many kids still are trying to recover and some can’t afford new clothes.”
Jayden’s efforts began after recently received a gift of tickets to see the NY Giants last fall. He decided to pay it forward and after seeing the devastation of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico, he wanted children there to experience the same joy and happiness he felt when he received the tickets.
With guidance from his parents Ana Rosado and Javier Perez, his toy and fund drive was a huge success.
The toy drive wasn't the first time Jayden and his family helped the victims of Hurricane Maria. Last fall, the family collected food and supplies for those affected by the storm. They also recently sent supplies to residents there as well.