By Elisha McNeilSPECIAL TO THE CHRONICLE
While students celebrated Halloween, a group on campus raised money for less fortunate children around the world.
During the week of Oct. 27, Give Hope at Hofstra hosted a Halloween bake sale and “Decorate a Pumpkin Day” to raise money and awareness for orphan boys and girls who are living overseas in poverty.
Students decorated a pumpkin or purchased Halloween baked goods, including cupcakes, cookies, candy bags and brownies for $1. The group received over $200 in donations.
Give Hope at Hofstra, a branch of the nonprofit organization Hope for Hope, is a first year club on campus dedicated to improving the lives of impoverished children.
Bianca Anchaluisa is president of Give Hope at Hofstra and a senior biology and psychology double major. She explained the purpose of the organization.
“Our mission is to provide clean water, food, safe shelter and education, and show sustainable agricultural techniques to orphan children in Kenya,” said Anchaluisa.
After receiving approval last semester to become an official University club, Give Hope at Hofstra is already starting their first active semester with multiple fundraising efforts.
On Halloween, Give Hope at Hofstra made goodie bags and distributed them to children that are now under the care of the AMT (Ambulance Medical Technicians) Children of Hope Foundation, an organization that takes in abandoned children. The organization also provides the children with medical care and assists them with the adoption of abandoned infants.
Tim Jaccard, the director of the N.Y. AMT program, said that the kids loved the goodie bags and were able to pair them with the costumes that they were wearing.
“They don’t have the resources to go out and go trick-or-treating,” Jaccard said, “So the reaction was great and it was received very well.”
Anthony Oropesa, junior and criminal justice major, is among the 22 active members of Give Hope at Hofstra and said that he enjoys helping people less fortunate than himself.
“It’s a good cause to help kids that don’t have much,” Oropesa said.
Daniel Reitman is a Hofstra graduate and the co-founder of Hope for Hope. He started the organization two years ago while he was still a student. Reitman said that Hope for Hope is trying to get its name and organization to branch out to as many college campuses as possible.
“[Hope for Hope] allows people to feel that they are really doing something,” Reitman said. “It’s been a lot of fun, for sure.”
Anchaluisa teamed up with Reitman to create one of the first branches of Hope for Hope at Hofstra University. Reitman said that Anchaluisa did all of the work and set everything up to start Give Hope at Hofstra.
“I love kids,” Anchaluisa said. “They’re my life. That’s why I wanted to start it.”
Give Hope at Hofstra has more fundraising events planned for the near future. Just in the month of November, the group plans to raise money by collecting loose change and collaborating with the HU Hunger Project to host a banquet to raise awareness on the statistics of the homeless. The club is also having a food drive and a holiday dinner.
All proceeds collected will go toward providing the four “hopes” – food, water, shelter, and education – to Kenyan orphans.