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School No. 23 Raises Nearly $3K for Leukemia, Lymphoma Research


Elizabeth, N.J., May 2, 2017 –
Students, staff members, and families of Nicholas Murray Butler School No. 23 raised $2,668.54 throughout March and April for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) during its Pennies for Patients campaign.

Desli DeMarisco and Michelle Lupo, LLS Campaign Specialists, visited the School No. 23 community and spoke to students at morning and afternoon “Pie Day” assemblies celebrating their fundraising achievement. Seven classes were presented banners by LLS, which included five that were presented bronze banners for raising a total of $100 to $199, and two that were presented silver banners for raising a total of $200 to $299.

School No. 23 also awarded the top fundraising classes with prizes, including the grand prize of an Olive Garden luncheon as well as pizza parties and an ice cream party.

Based on the raucous cheers of the students attending both assemblies, the main event for the students, however, was the opportunity to see staff members of School No. 23 take pies to the face. The staff made a pledge to the students at the onset of the campaign that the students from the classes that raised the most money could pie them in the face if they could collectively exceed the school’s fundraising goal.

The campaign, coordinated by School No. 23 teacher Raymond Muller and social worker Kenyetta Jackson, raised $2,668.54, which far exceeded the school’s goal of $2,017 set at the campaign’s kickoff ceremony in March. Fourth grade student Adriann Melo was recognized individually at the afternoon assembly for raising $270 through a personal donation page he and his mother created that was linked to his classroom’s donation page.

Elizabeth Mayor J. Christian Bollwage attended the afternoon assembly to greet the students and brought along a special guest who was directly impacted by the work of the organization to which School No. 23 chose to donate funds. City of Elizabeth Business Administrator Bridget Anderson, who a couple years ago was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, shared her experience with students and thanked them for raising funds for LLS to aid research that has helped effectively treat her and countless others.

“An essential component of teaching and learning at Elizabeth Public Schools is creating a safe and caring environment in which social, intellectual, and physical wellness is promoted,” said Elizabeth Public Schools Superintendent Olga Hugelmeyer. “The students and team members of School No. 23, through social awareness and inspired actions, have shown the impact our schools can have on the members of our community and those in need by caring for others.”

According to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, approximately every three minutes one person in the United States is diagnosed with a blood cancer and an estimated 1,237,824 people in the US are either living with, or are in remission from, leukemia, lymphoma or myeloma.

Students and staff members throughout Elizabeth Public Schools raise funds each year to support various organizations such as LLS, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and Community Food Bank of New Jersey.

“Elizabeth Public Schools is committed to giving back to the community, whether it is in the form of community service to directly help Elizabeth residents or fundraising for noble causes such as leukemia and lymphoma research,” said Elizabeth Board of Education President Stanley Neron. “The Elizabeth Board of Education is proud of the passion and determination shown by the School No. 23 learning community in raising this significant amount of money for families affected by leukemia and lymphoma. On behalf of the Board, I thank the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the members of the School No. 23 staff who worked together to coordinate such a successful event and great learning experience for our students.”