It has been one week since the horrible event that took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School. A day of mourning has been declared in several states.
It isn’t any easier to comprehend. Like many parents I looked for guidance explaining the unexplainable to my children. I remain stunned, shaken, and angry. When I read an account of the incident in the newspaper, I could not help picturing my own child’s school, its hallways, classrooms, and staff. I tried to pull back from watching too much of the news.
I opted for filling that time with spending meaningful time with friends and family- a phone call to one, a lunch with another, some one-on-one time with my sons and cookie making with my daughter. As a substitute teacher on Monday, I wore the school colors of Sandy Hook in remembrance. After school was over, I thanked and hugged a few teachers I knew. Still feelings of helplessness linger.
While there are no easy answers, I do agree it is time for a change. When I figure out what part I can help play in that change, I will be wholeheartedly on board.
For now, I would like to share a few ways that anyone can contribute to helping the people of Newtown that I have learned about.
Coping and Caring Parent Express Bus
Gwen Samuel, Mom Congress delegate from Connecticut is working very hard putting together the Sandy Hook Elementary Coping and Caring Parent Bus Express. The bus tour will bring comfort to Newtown by visiting locations throughout Connecticut from December 21-24, hosting various healing activities and conclude in Newtown with a special presentation on Christmas Eve. Grief counselors and children’s books and activities on coping with loss will be available on the bus. A Heroes Tribute to Educators is planned. Appearances by Clifford the Dog and other children’s characters will be on hand. Sponsors continue to join the effort. They include: Comcast, Scholastic, Kimochis, Nellie Mae Education Foundation and more. You can donate to this effort by visiting www.ctparentsunion.org
If you are able to create a personalized condolence card, these will be hand delivered in Newtown on the 24th.
Mail handmade cards to:
Connecticut Parents Union
PO Box 3004
Meriden, CT 06451
Snowflakes for Sandy Hook
The National PTA is helping to spread the word about making snowflakes for Sandy Hook students. They will be resuming their school year in a different building in a nearby town. Parent volunteers are working to welcome the students back with a winter wonderland within the school. They would like to decorate the entire school with unique snowflakes. You can be as creative as possible. Snowflakes should be sent by January 12 to:
60 Connolly Parkway
Building 12, Suite 103
Hamden, CT 06514
Random Acts of Kindness
This idea was posted on social media and comes from Ann Curry. She encourages everyone to fulfill random acts of kindness in honoring all the victims. Watch.
These are all very legitimate organizations that you can trust and are worthy of your contributions.
By helping the people of Newtown and the students of Sandy Hook Elementary, we also help ourselves heal. Then, we focus on real meaningful change.
If you have further ways to help please let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please comment, share, tweet to get as much participation as possible. Thank you!