The West Roxbury community gives to those in need. This point is illustrated by the collection of schools, parents, and many nighttime garbed-children, all involved in a pajamas drive for Cradles to Crayons.
Cradles to Crayons is a non-profit organization that "collects new and like-new children's items through grassroots community drives and corporate donations," according to its website. "Donations are then processed and packaged by volunteers, and are distributed to disadvantaged children across the state through a collaborative network of social service agencies and school partners."
On Jan. 21 the Holy Name School held a movie night with students wearing their bedtime apparel, and collected pajamas. The school made a poster with a play on the 'Got Milk?' ads with a picture of the student council in their pajamas with the heading of 'Got Pajamas?' followed up with 'Unfortunately, many kids don't."
Said Holy Name parent Amy Alessi, "The idea behind giving to the needy will be incorporated into the curriculum where we challenge the kids to think up creative ideas on how to collect donations for the drive."
Of course, some students are excited about how the school that collects the most pajamas will have a visit by a Boston Bruin. The second place school will receive autographed Bruins pucks. This is the Bruins fifth annual pajama.
Added Alessi, "The students would like to know who is taller (Zdeno) Chara or our own Father Oscar - (who is) very tall in his own right." Chara is 6-feet 9-inches tall. The Bruins will select the player who visits, but the kids are pulling for Chara.
At The Upper Crust Pizzeria, just around the corner from Holy Name, the local business is also getting involved in helping Cradles for Crayons. And currently if you bring in a pair of donated pajamas you will get a free slice of pizza.
"We are doing a dine-out night at Upper Crust Pizzeria on Tuesday, Jan 31 where if you dine-in or pick-up takeout and mention Holy Name, 15% of the total sales will be donated to the drive," said Kelley Santangelo, manager of Upper Crust, who has two children attending Holy Name and two who went through the school.
All sales on Jan. 31, in which people say they are there for the pajama drive from 5-9 p.m. will be included, said Santangelo. "We will give a check for 15% to the charity. There will be a 'guest pizza maker' from the school here and the fundraiser is for 'Cradles to Crayons'."
Also individuals like West Roxbury resident Cathy Ware have gotten involved with Cradles to Crayons. Ware is collecting clothes at her Redlands Road home.
"I decided to do it because there are no dropoff sites in the immediate area and I have room in my basement," said Ware, whose son goes to the Beethoven Schools, which had a collection in December. "The more ways to get people to donate, the better."
Holy Name parent Diane Crowley provided info on the successful movie night. "We collected over 140 PJs and raised over $1,000, all of which will be used to purchase more PJs for the Cradles to Crayons drive. We would like to thank City Councilor John Connolly for his generous donation of pajamas."
Holy Name's Pajama Drive will continue until Feb. 29. You can dropoff gently-used or new pajamas at the Holy Name Parish or Upper Crust Pizzeria.
Monetary donations will be used to purchase pajamas for donation. Checks should be made payable to Holy Name Parish School, being sure to make note of the "PJ Drive."