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Celebrating the Arc New York’s 75 Anniversary With a Week of Service

Celebrating the Arc New York’s 75 Anniversary With a Week of Service

Categories: Blog, Community Partner, Featured News

April Kloepfer and Matt Pasano making sandwichesIn the first week of June, chapters of the Arc New York set out to commemorate 75 years of promoting and protecting human rights for members of the intellectual and developmental disabilities community by engaging in a statewide week of service.

Each chapter completed two community service projects that ranged from community cleanups to fence building for Habitat for Humanity.

AHRC Nassau participated in the Arc’s Week of Service by organizing a peanut butter and jelly sandwich contest and concert food drive, both to tackle food insecurity in the community.

The peanut butter and jelly contest drummed up some friendly competition between the agency’s day programs. Day services sites were sent a flyer requesting donations of bread, peanut butter and jelly. Then the locations that contributed the most were invited to the Brookville mansion to take part in a PB&J sandwich making competition.

In total, four locations were selected to compete. On competition day, the teams joined in the Brookville Mansion and received their Week of Service t-shirts provided by the Arc of New York from longstanding agency volunteers April Kloepfer who was supported by her father Stephen. The father-daughter duo also managed the sign-in sheet and helped the team members with any questions they had.

The goal was for each team to complete 75 sandwiches, with the fastest team awarded an ice cream social for their site. With the music blasting, and their sandwich making material prepped and ready to go, the participants hurriedly started making sandwiches.

People supported and staff separated tasks to make sandwiches as quickly as possible. Matt Fasano, who is part of the Farmingdale team, stood at the edge of the table watching his team create the sandwiches.

“We’re doing peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for food insecurity,” said Matt. “I have to count the sandwiches and put them in bags. And they’re playing my favorite song ‘Eye of the Tiger.’”

Matt’s job was to bag, stack and tally the sandwiches as they came to him. He was caught up in the excitement of the competition but also felt proud of the work being done.

The second event of the Week of Service project was a free concert starring the Fortune Star Band, a rock band of Long Island middle and high school students, which also promoted a food drive for guests. The volunteer group share their love of music by performing specifically for nonprofits and community organizations. President Thea Chen and organizer Bin Wu reached proactively reached out to give a performance at the agency.

At the end of the Week of Service, over 300 sandwiches were donated to Roosevelt-Freeport Church Pantry, St. Killian’s Food Pantry in Farmingdale, St. Marten of Tours in Bethpage and Vision of Hope Food Pantry, and over 160 pounds of food was collected and delivered to Nosh Delivers!