Middle school students are helping a school in Cuba, and they started before diplomatic relations were reopened with the United States.
Students of the Saddle River School District made connections through the effort of school board member John Lasalandra, who joined a non profit organization People to People, an ambassador program dedicated to bringing good will and assistance to people with few resources.
Lasalandra hoped for some volunteers and supplies. He got much more from the kids.
“They made true connections, student to student,” Lasalandra said.
William Ronzitt, the Superintendent of Wandell School said that he thought his school could do better than a few pencils and backpacks when he heard that the non profit needed school supplies.
“I thought, ‘What a great opportunity for the Wandell students to connect with kids in Cuba,’ so I suggested our fifth-graders pen pal with the children in Cuba,” Ronzitti said.
Students wrote get to know you letters, and they joined with staff, teachers, and community groups to collect supplies and recreation equipment. They sent the package with brand new t shirts and caps that had been left over from a previous Wandell Field Day.