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Warm Greetings Sent to New Jersey Teens in Wake of Hurricane Sandy


AE - Water polo photoThe Vista Murrieta High School Water Polo Team organized and led an effort to help teens in New Jersey stricken by the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. Over 10,000 kids were affected on the New Jersey Coast in Atlantic and Ocean Counties. ‘CAUSE WE CARE’ identified seven schools in Toms River, Pineland, Point Pleasant and Atlantic City through a discovery process that involved Samaritan’s Purse, the office of the Governor, area Superintendents and Principals, all in need of our support.


Three palettes left our community last week and arrived at their final destination of Atlantic City High School on Monday of this week, where over 65% of the teens live below the poverty level. Over 34 boxes containing new winter jackets bundled together with gloves a beanie and hand-made scarves, thermals, PJ’s, and warm sweats will cloth over 215 teens this holiday.


“Our goal was to get our communities’ gifts to the teens in New Jersey before the Christmas holiday, with temperatures dipping; they could be assured of a warm jacket” shared Jen Vanderhayden, a team mom supporting the project. Moving boxes around the holiday time can become a logistical nightmare. “We reached out to the community and within 20 minutes of sending out an email asking for logistical assistance, Professional Hospital Supply, responded with a phone call… ‘I think we can help you with that…’ we were thrilled, to say the least.” That very same afternoon, a truck showed up at French Valley Aviation, Cause We Care’s distribution center to pick up the boxes and move them cross country.


The campaign, ‘CAUSE WE CARE’ was kicked off with the generous support of Terry Gilmore and Paradise Chevrolet Cadillac. Local teens joined from all area high schools in helping out the Vista Murrieta Water Polo team in gathering jackets and winter clothing. Hurricane Sandy was truly astounding in its size and power. It may be out of sight, but it certainly wasn’t out of mind. Thank-you Temecula Valley!