In Schenectady, members of Soroptimist International of Schenectady worked with the children at the Boys and Girls Club in Rotterdam to make holiday treats and sponsored an annual holiday party for about 80 women at the YWCA last month. On Dec. 16, members worked with children at the Boys and Girls Club to help them frost and decorate holiday cookies, as well as make cards for their family members. Three days later, the group provided turkey, ham and other fixings for a festive dinner, and members donated gift certificates and raffle prizes. Chicken for the dinner was provided by Home Style of Niskayuna; Price Chopper/Market32 Category Managers and their Trade Partners put together goody bags for the guests; and Stewart’s donated “Make Your Own Sundaes.” Kim Siciliano, executive director of the YWCA, led the group in songs. Soroptimist is a global women’s nonprofit organization whose members volunteer to improve the lives of women and girls through programs leading to social and economic empowerment. For more information on the local Soroptimist group, visit www.soroptimistofschenectady.
In Clifton Park, 24-year-old Shenendehowa grad Brittny Cooper is planning to help low-income families across the country build affordable homes while raising money for affordable housing organizations as part of a 4,000-mile bike trek from New Hampshire to Washington state this summer. The effort is part of the national Bike & Build program, where participants ride across the country and stop along the way to build houses in cooperation with the Habitat for Humanity and Rebuilding together organizations. Cooper, who currently works as a graphic designer and animator in New York City, hopes to help build at least 13 homes during her trek, which runs from June through August. She’ll be joined by 35 other volunteers on the coast-to-coast ride. As of Thursday, she’d raised just over $1,000 toward her $5,000 goal. For more information and to donate to Cooper’s trip, visit give.classy.org/BritBB18. For more information on the Bike & Build program, visit https://bikeandbuild.org/.
In Amsterdam, local volunteers, businesses and members of the area’s Latino community helped raise money for victims of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico through a fundraiser called “Live Aid: Rebuilding/Never Broken, Fulmont For Puerto Rico." The event, held in November at Amsterdam High School, featured volunteers, local restaurants, local bands and other businesses donating time, money and items for the event. The Live Aid was actually a two-part fund-raiser, with The Taste of the Mohawk featuring 24 restaurants serving food for the cause and a concert featuring local bands, including Skeeter Creek, Bronte Roman, MedRock, Flame, and Louie and Lisa Velez, all of which volunteered to perform. The event was sponsored by numerous local restaurants, local newspapers, stores, taverns and stores and individuals. All proceeds from the event were donated to hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico.
High Notes is a feature of The Gazette Opinion section that appears every Monday to spotlight the good being done in our communities by individuals, organizations and businesses. Reader submissions to High Notes are welcome. Send suggestions to Editorial Page Editor Mark Mahoney at [email protected].