Ariana DeMattei, a 7th grader at the Westhampton Beach Middle School in Westhampton, New York is organizing many community fundraisers to help reach her goal of filling 150 backpacks with school supplies.
Her “Spring Splash at Rogers Beach Pavilion” fundraiser is coming up on Sunday, April 7, 2013 and is the first of many fundraisers she is planning. Ariana is hoping that these backpacks will then be distributed to local elementary school students in need by September.
Take “the plunge” with Ariana and read more about her great Bat Mitzvah project.
MM: Why did you decide to take on this particular project?
AD: My project Backpacks For Fellow Students (BFFS) was started with the purpose of providing elementary school children, whose families have been affected by today’s difficult economy, the basic school supplies they need to start off the school year. Imagine these children’s faces when they are able to walk through the doors of their school in September, confident and equipped with the same supplies as their friends. Imagine how happy their parents are when their child is given the same chance at success as those children who surround them.
MM: In your own words, what does it mean to you to do a Mitzvah Project for your Bat Mitzvah?
AD: As part of preparing for becoming a Bat Mitzvah, one is encouraged to do a Mitzvah Project (a charitable act of human kindness). A successful Mitzvah Project should have a profound effect on people. For my Mitzvah Project, I am combining two things that are very important to me: children and education. I’m grateful to everyone in the community who has supported BFFS and all of their efforts in helping me achieve my goal.
MM: Can you give us details of your Mitzvah Project?
AD: The event, which is co-sponsored by Human Understanding & Growth Services, Inc. (HUGS) of Westhampton is called, “Spring Splash at Rogers Pavilion Beach” and takes place on April 7, 2013. HUGS is an organization that helps empower communities, especially kids, to lead healthier, fuller, substance free lives. There is a $25 participation fee and spectators will be charged $10 for adults and $5 for children. Steeldrumania, a steel drum band, will be performing. There will also be beverages donated by Hampton Coffee, face painting, and fire trucks for the kids to explore. Prizes will be awarded for “First In The Water” and “Best Costume.” Each “Splasher” that registers with a minimum of $25.00 in donations will receive a drawstring backpack.
MM: How did you spread the word about your Mitzvah Project?
AD: There are many ways I am promoting this project. I am asking people to:
SPREAD THE WORD: Forward this Mitzvah Market feature to your friends, coworkers and family members who you think may be interested in supporting my efforts.
CONNECT: While you’re surfing the web, stop by our Wish List Registry on Amazon.com. You will find a complete list of school supplies needed to fill the backpacks.
DONATE: Make a tax deductible donation. Checks can be made out to JCOH, a 501 (c) (3). Earmark the check for BFFS. 100% of all donations will be utilized for school supplies.
PARTICIPATE: Look for upcoming fundraisers including sports clinics, bake sales and a movie night!
MM: For how long can people donate to this charity?
AD: People can support BFFS by participating in these fun events over the next few months and through the summer.
We wish Ariana much luck with her Mitzvah Project and we thank her and her family for sharing this great idea with our Mitzvah Market readers.