The Presidential Service Award is an award reserved for dedicated volunteers who take giving back very seriously. For 6 Morris County teens, being a mentor for SNAP (Special Needs Athletic Program) has given them an opportunity to provide friendship to individuals with special needs at weekly sports clinics. Whether these mentors are coming early to set up, staying late to clean up or planning extra events for the kids, they do it with a smile on their face and really make a difference.
The students who earned the bronze award (at least 50 volunteer hours) are: Christopher DelMonte, Grace King, and Caroline Sekunda all from Morristown High School, Gavin Frey and Alexander Grayzel , Morristown Beard School. Earning his Silver Presidential Service Award for devoting 100 hours to SNAP is Luke Potamianos, Randolph High School.
Kimberle Strasser, director of SNAP, has been particularly pleased with how creative and technologically savvy these mentors were when SNAP went virtual in April.
“Realizing that it would be impossible to play sports in person, the mentors came up with alternative ideas like SNAP Bingo, charades, baking, name that tune, zumba,
and even organized an end of the season “party” all done using Zoom. I am so proud of all the mentors for making such a positive impact on children with autism and other disabilities. While the kids benefit from all the positive interactions, the lessons the mentors learn about compassion, patience and acceptance will be with them forever. It’s kids helping kids, which happens to be SNAP’s motto.”
For more information on SNAP, visit www.snapclinics.org.