Roosevelt Elementary School students collected nearly twice their goal in loose coins for Olive Garden's Pasta for Patients effort, a national campaign that helps those battling leukemia and lymphoma.
Pasta for Pennies helps raise money for those battling blood cancers with proceeds going to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The money is used for research and services for patients.
The class that raises the most money is treated to a luncheon provided by Olive Garden, however in past years, students have opted to donate the luncheon to community groups. In previous years, students treated the fire and police departments.
Special to Hubbard Community News
Roosevelt school administrators and teachers dressed in medical garb to attend a luncheon at Olive Garden when students surpassed their fundraising goal in the Olive Garden Pennies for Pasta effort held last month. Pictured, from left, are school nurse, Luann Eger; guidance counselor, Rosemary Parisi; Principal Raymond Soloman; assistant principal, Robyn Fette; school secretary Helen Northcott; and school secretary Madelyn JanJanin.
This year the students decided to share the lunch with members of the Hubbard Senior Citizens Center.
''We originally set our goal to collect $4,000, but students raised that amount in only one week of the three-week program,'' said Kim Kirila, member of the Roosevelt School Parents Association. After seeing the figures, Principal Raymond Soloman and Assistant Principal Robyn Fette upped the ante and agreed to dress up like Olive Garden mascots, Drs. Penny and Pasta on the day of the luncheon if students could raise $5,000. The three-week program was extended a few extra days to make for snow days in which students couldn't bring their loose change to the classrooms. The total brought into the classrooms ultimately reached nearly nearly $8,000.
''I am amazed at the level of understanding from these children and their level of commitment to continue raising funds for cancer research,'' said Kelly Schaffer, Pennies for Patients chairperson and RSAP secretary.
Students in Tracey Vallas' third grade class raised the highest amount at $527.45 and earned the Olive Garden lunch, which they shared with the senior citizens. Students were treated to a Super Sub Station, where they could build their own sub sandwiches and enjoy the special lunch with their guests.
Paula Robinson, president of the Senior Citizen's Club, welcomed the students to the center during their regular Thursday meeting for the luncheon. Robinson thanked the students for graciously sharing their winnings with them.
Also attending the event was Melissa Werbach, representative from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Werbach delivered the lunch to the Center.
Since 2002, the children of Roosevelt school have raised more than $35,000 toward cancer research, Werbach said.