When Superstorm Sandy ravaged the eastern shore of Staten Island, CSI alumna and graduate student Mary Beth Melendez and her classmates were onsite almost immediately providing hot food, warm conversation, and open hearts to those families in the most devastated areas.
This past Saturday, staffers from Anderson Live joined Mary Beth and her guide dog Trixie, along with more than 20 volunteers from the College of Staten Island, at the recently opened All Hands volunteer coordination center at the Robert DeFalco Realty building at 1676 Hylan Boulevard, to deliver turkey meals to neighbors in need.
The food, donated by Harry and David to Anderson Cooper, was gifted to Mary Beth for distribution. After many discussions with Katie Cumiskey, Associate Professor in the Psychology Department and the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program at CSI, and Ken Bach, the College’s Communications Director, Mary Beth and the Anderson Live producing team determined that the Stapleton UAME Church, El Centro del Inmigrante, and VFW Guyon Rescue would each receive a visit.
The day-long caravan of deliveries was made possible by Carol Brower, CSI Director of Student Life, who organized 16 student volunteers, including Student Government President Michael Allamby. The students were joined by College President Dr. William J. Fritz and his wife Bonnie, Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. A. Ramona Brown, her Assistant Vice President Salvador Mena, Director of the Master’s in Mental Health Program Dr. Frances Meléndez, Carol Brower, and Ken Bach.
The segment will air on the nationally syndicated Thanksgiving Special of Anderson Live on Wednesday, November 21 on Fox 5 (WNYW-TV) at noon in New York City.