Washington Elementary School Donates Over 1,000 Cans of Food to Holy Trinity-West Orange Food Pantry

Students form a Human Chain to send their donations to the Holy Trinity-West Orange Food Pantry across the street from Washington School. Credits: Cynthia Cumming
The line forms at the entrance of Washington School. Credits: Cynthia Cumming
Washington staff Anne Englehardt and Jennifer Bottarini send the canned goods down the line to students. Credits: Cynthia Cumming
The Human Chain of Washington Students stretches out the Washington parking lot, down Franklin Avenue and across the street to the food pantry (in the right, rear). Credits: Cynthia Cumming
Officers Tom Carroll and Scott Smarsh provide security and traffic control for the event. Credits: Cynthia Cumming
Holy Trinity member Maria Basile gets in on the action (center). Credits: Cynthia Cumming
Jen Tarullo and Linda Perna (left and right), organizers of the event, stand with Washington Elementary School Principal Marie DeMaio. Credits: Cynthia Cumming

WEST ORANGE, NJ - Once the police barricades were placed at the corners of Main Street and Franklin Avenues and Officers Scott Smarsh and Tom Carroll stood at the ready, the Eighth Annual Washington Elementary School Human Chain began forming from the entrance of Washington School, stretching all the way inside the Holy Trinity-West Orange Food Pantry.

The students of Washington Elementary School, along with the Fifth Grade Student Council, collected a record-breaking 1033 items for the  Food Pantry. The Student council collected items from the students and staff from February until the end of March. From 1:30 until 2:15 students in Grades 3-5 passed soups and canned goods hand over hand until it reached its destination on the shelves of the food pantry. Kindergarten through Second grade brought items directly into the pantry.

The event is always a highlight of the year for food pantry volunteers, who look forward to their special 'visit' each year. "It's a pretty amazing thing to see," said Food Pantry Administrator Cynthia Cumming.  "From the littlest ones to the Fifth graders, they all get seem to enjoy this so much, and we love having them. The West Orange Schools have always gone above and beyond to help us out, and we're very humbled."

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The Student Council is already looking forward to planning out next year's drive, with the help of Linda Perna, Washington teacher and the food drive organizer, along with Jen Tarullo and Principal Marie DeMaio. 



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