Giving Tuesday: Wonder Girls in Rockland County help combat food insecurity
Today is giving Tuesday and some female students in Rockland County got into the spirit.
The Wonder Girls is an afterschool program for female students from Rockland and Bergen counties. Today, girls from Fieldstone Middle School and North Rockland High School filled the Haverstraw Community Center to pack up 400 bags of food to donate to organizations fighting food insecurity.
They packed vegetables, fruits, canned goods, pasta, rice, sauces and olive oils.
Goya donated 10,000 pounds of food to the Wonder Girls throughout the month of November, and the girls have been steadfastly packing it up and distributing it throughout the county.
The Wonder Girls know all too well how important it is to give back to their community here in Rockland, where about 14% of people live below the poverty line. That figure larger than the national average, according to Data USA.
"There very well may be girls within Wonder Girls that are a part of those families that are insecure," said Wonder Girls co-founder Irene Paleologos Robles. "They're giving back to their communities and it's unbelievable to watch."
It looks simple enough – just a girl's organization doing some community service, but beneath the surface, there is actually way more going on here.
"First of all, community service builds self-esteem, that's a proven fact," says Robles. "It actually helps girls to come out of their shells a little bit because they have to build camaraderie with others. They have to be able to speak to one another as they pack up their bags. You are not just standing there silently. You're helping each other.”
"Helping people can make a big difference in their lives…being unified is very important and especially women coming together, it shows empowerment and its very special to us, said North Rockland High School Student GIanna Joseph.