Between 700 and 1,000 people attended Sylvan Place’s annual block party on Dec. 16, and donated money to Sunrise Association, Inc. and Anchor Program Fund, Inc.
“We probably made about 25 percent of our money that night,” said Alex Carr, who organized the block party.
Residents of Sylvan Place then left a box out for others to make donations, and collected donations from neighbors and from the John A. Roger Jr. Foundation, which donates $500 to each charity every year.
This year, the residents raised $2,300, that was split evenly between the Sunrise Association, Inc. and Anchor Program Fund, Inc. According to Carr, the residents used to raise money for a scholarship at South High School in memory of Chris Schroeder who was a senior at the school when he lost his battle to cancer in 2013. But this year, his parents Wally and Carole said that the residents had donated enough to the scholarship fund and wanted the residents to raise money for the camp he used to attend, Sunrise Day Camp in Oceanside.
According to the camp’s website, it first opened in 2006 and was “the first and only day camp in the world, offered free of charge, for children with cancer and their siblings.” It is run completely on donations, and allows children in treatment to continue with their home doctors while attending camp each day. All activities at the camp are also designed to best accommodate chronically ill children.
The other half of the money raised went to Camp A.N.C.H.O.R. in Lido Beach, because four Sylvan Place residents use those facilities. The program provides after-school and Saturday programs during the school year and offers a six-week camp for the town’s special needs population, according to its website.
Residents presented the camps with the checks at Alex Carr’s house on Feb. 3, with an appearance by Town of Hempstead Supervisor Laura Gillen, who found out about the check presentation and asked Carr if she could attend. She then presented the Sylvan Place residents with a citation for their good deed.
“As a former volunteer for many years at Camp Anchor, I was incredibly moved by our neighbors on Sylvan Place who selflessly raise awareness and funds each year to support the important, life-changing programs that Anchor is able to provide,” Gillen said in a statement. “Their acts of generosity and kindness, like so many others, make up the heart and soul of our town.”
The block party this year will be held on Dec. 15 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.