Academy Street Elementary Students Collect Spare Change To Benefit Stony Brook Long Island's Children's Hospital


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    Six School Districts Scheduled for Collection Events This Month

    Stony Brook University mascot, Wolfie entertains a crowd of excited students, faculty and organizers at Change for Children Campaign’s first collection event at Academy Elementary School on October 5, 2010.

    STONY BROOK, N.Y., October 21, 2010 – Students at Academy Street Elementary School in Bayport were one of the first schools to present spare change collected as part of a Suffolk County-wide initiative called “Change for Children” benefitting the newly announced Stony Brook Long Island Children’s Hospital. Hundreds of kindergarten through 5th grade students returned their coin collection boxes at the first official Change for Children Campaign collection event, which was matched by Peter Ferentinos, a member of the Stony Brook University Medical Center Development Council, who attended the presentation, pledged to match the amount (the total of which is not yet available).

    Through a partnership with the Suffolk County Schools Superintendents Association, Stony Brook Children’s and the Children’s Hospital Task Force are distributing spare change collection boxes to each elementary school in Suffolk County during the 2010-11 academic year (special fundraising events and/or drives for middle school and high school students will be coordinated upon request).

    Eager Academy Street Elementary School students help by carrying bins of coin collection boxes filled with coins to benefit Stony Brook Long Island’s Children’s Hospital.

    In April, $3,912 was raised by St. James Elementary School students in Smithtown and matched by an anonymous donor bringing the total to $7,824. Six school districts are scheduled for collection events this month.

    Chaired by John Tsunis, Chairman of the Board of Gold Coast Bank, and comprised of 33 community members and professionals who have enlisted as volunteers, the Children’s Hospital Task Force was formed in October 2009 to raise funds and awareness around the mission of Stony Brook Children’s Hospital. Two members, Janine DeSimone and Theodora Pellicane, are co-chairpersons for the Change for Children Campaign.
    “In these economic times, it’s wonderful to have children truly involved in helping others,” said DeSimone. In addition to Ferentinos’ matching pledge, companies and other individuals have committed to match the funds raised by several other Suffolk County elementary schools and/or districts. As an incentive for students, Panera Bread is donating gift certificates to students who participate in the Change for Children Campaign. In addition, AMF Bowling is donating a bowling party per grade per school. In addition, Gold Coast Bank and Patriot Courier Services have offered bank cars to pick up collection boxes and personnel for accounting purposes.

    The Change for Children’s Campaign kicked off its first collection event at Academy Street School in Bayport NY on October 5, 2010.

    “All of these people specifically stepped forward to support the Change for Children Campaign,” said Danielle Holton, Senior Director of Development in the Office of Advancement at Stony Brook University Medical Center. “We want to thank every family, every child who has contributed and who will contribute. This community has a great need, and deserves the very best.”

    Over the course of the next year Children’s Hospital’s goal is 100% participation from each Suffolk County school district. There are more than a quarter of a million students attending schools in Suffolk County's 71 public school districts.