Sending money just wouldn’t be enough.
On Valentine’s Day, the American Sign Language Club (ASL) at SJC Long Island wanted to make a different kind of impact on the children at Mill Neck Manor School for the Deaf.
“We wanted to create a relationship with them — we don’t want it to just be us sending them money or anything like that,” said ASL President Julia Takats, regarding a Valentine’s Day card writing event ran by the club this month.
The cards contained personalized, heartfelt messages to children at the school, as well as contact information for the St. Joseph’s students who wrote the cards — so if a child wished to reply, they had the opportunity to do so.
Club members said a main goal of the Feb. 11 project in O’Connor Hall was to establish a pen pal system with the Mill Neck Manor children. Another motivation was to communicate with those who often lose out on the chance to be heard.
Dana Klein, the campus ASL club vice president, said the club took on the card-making effort to make the Mill Neck Manor students’ days “a little better and brighter.”
Klein, a volunteer at the school for the deaf since she was in middle school, played a key role in partnering the ASL club with the school. The ASL club has also hosted T-shirt, bingo and movie night fundraisers on behalf of Mill Neck Manor.
Members said the club plans to hold more fundraising events for the charity.