TBy Nicholas Plante ’18
The Chaminade Flyers recently sprang into action to help men all over Long Island who are in need of traditional business attire. Under the moderation of Mr. Salvatore Garofalo ’08, Sophomore GSO teamed with up the Society of St. Vincent de Paul to collect over 50 baskets of gently used suit jackets, blazers, shirts, ties, pants, belts, and shoes. From Thursday, October 8 to Wednesday, October 14, students delivered their donations to the Darby Auditorium lobby before the beginning of homeroom.
While Mr. Garofalo perfectly coordinated the donation drive, a sophomore originally pitched the idea. During this past summer, John Paul Lynch ’18 had heard about a number of clothing drives that St. Vincent de Paul had held in accordance with other schools.
“I didn’t recall Chaminade having a drive like this,” said J.P. “I knew that many students here would have access to various dress clothes at home that either they or their fathers have outgrown.”
After this realization, J.P. reached out to Mrs. Nora Aufiero, the Donor and Community Engagement Coordinator at St. Vincent de Paul. She expressed a strong interest in his idea, as the society had not previously held a drive like this one, either. Thanks to Mr. Garofalo, the plans were finalized at the beginning of the school year.
As he reflected on the drive, J.P. said, “It feels great to see my small idea become a larger reality. It’s also very pleasing to see many of my peers willing to help those in need.”
The clothing drive would not have been possible without the efforts of Mrs. Aufiero and the rest of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. By providing $13 million in goods and services to 205,154 people this past year, the society certainly lives up to their motto, “We help people.” With over 1,000 Vincentian volunteers in 52 Long Island communities, St. Vincent de Paul can operate twelve food pantries, three thrift stores and two transitional housing programs. The clothes collected during Chaminade’s clothing drive will be given to men temporarily living in their two transitional homes, Anthony House and Dismas House.
On behalf of the society, Mrs. Aufiero said, “We need the goods as the overall need is great, and it is of course important for the kids to know how significant it is to give back to their community.”
The drive culminated with a presentation during Sophomore Spirit Day on Wednesday, October 14. Mrs. Terri Zenobio, another member of St. Vincent de Paul, spoke to the sophomore class about the successful clothing drive, which she related to the overall theme of the day. According to Mrs. Zenobio, the students’ efforts reflected their “CPR,” or class, personal, and religious spirits.
She commended the students for their generous assistance and noted, “In doing this, we’re all helping Jesus himself.”
After watching a brief video regarding the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Aidan Fitzgerald ’18 said, “It was really nice to see how the hard working people of St. Vincent de Paul dedicate their lives to helping others.”
The Chaminade student body prudently accepted the call to help the less fortunate and certainly did a wonderful job with the clothing drive.