Local families impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic have faced many hardships in recent months, including financial insecurity, but service organizations, like the Bellmore Kiwanis Club, have stepped up to help families in the community and beyond.
Members of the club raise money for different groups, organizations and charities as well as specific individuals and families. “The Kiwanis Club of the Bellmores has been around for 60 years and our mission has stayed the same: to help children and families in the town of Bellmore,” said President Andrew Meyerowitz.
Since the onset of the pandemic, the club has provided additional support to the dozen local families it assists regularly. From food to gas gift cards, it seeks to meet all the needs of local families who have been hard hit in the wake of the pandemic.
“We went right to work helping families and supporting anyone in need,” Meyerowitz said.
Despite losing the primary source of its revenue with the cancellation of the Nassau County Strawberry Festival, the club has found creative new ways to raise money. “We haven’t been face-to-face with the community in a long time, but we’ve found new ways to adapt,” Meyerowitz said.
The club recently held a virtual fundraiser in conjunction with Bellmore restaurants, including Piccolo’s, American Beauty Bar & Grille and Cassidy’s Pub, which raised more than $1,000 to provide aid to local families.
The Kiwanis Club of the Bellmores maintains an active role in the community throughout the year by hosting food drives, supplying children with school supplies and giving families access to the Newbridge Pool in the summer. Kiwanis also has a large presence in the schools, including Key Club for high school students, Builder’s Club for middle schoolers, and K Kids for elementary-aged children.
But the reach of the club goes far beyond Bellmore. On Oct. 1, 2021, North Bellmore resident Peter Mancuso will assume the position of president of Kiwanis International. He currently serves as the president of the East Meadow Kiwanis.
“East Meadow’s Kiwanis club is the largest in the state and extremely active in the community,” Mancuso said. “The club has done very well to react to the pandemic.”
Mancuso and East Meadow Kiwanis Club have continued to raise money and help families in need in their community, including donating personal protective equipment and meals to frontline workers.
“The horrors of the pandemic present tremendous challenges, but provide us an opportunity to show unity and strength,” Mancuso added. “A better day will come if we work for it.”
The Bellmore Kiwanis Club urges all local residents facing pandemic-related hardships, whether they live in Bellmore or not, to reach out if they need assistance. Contact information can be found on the club’s website, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram pages.