Yesterday, along with some friends and coworkers, I participated in New York Cares Day. It was a huge success: $235,000 was raised for New York Cares year-long programs, and 117 schools in NYC were given revitalizing makeovers. 8,000 volunteers painted bookcases, murals, fences and walls, organized libraries and classrooms. Our team was assigned to PS 11 K, the Purvis J. Behan Elementary School in Brooklyn, and our job for the day was to paint as many bookcases and shelves as we could. Following a list of classrooms that were registered for the day, we took to the halls with red, blue, purple, yellow and green paints, brushes in hand. For each room, we had to take out anything that was in the bookcases, lay down some butcher paper to protect the floors, and then decide how we wanted to paint each one: stripes? handprints? I like to think we did a pretty good job. We and everyone else wanted to add as much color and fun as we could. At the end of the day, we returned to each classroom we had dismantled, put everything back the way we found it, and admired our handy work.
Other teams at PS 11 K were painting murals that had been drawn out on walls and doors. Some were painting fences outside a bright yellow. The library also got a much needed re-organization. On Monday morning, 600 children will arrive at PS 11 to find bright new colors in their classrooms and new murals to enjoy. More importantly, they will hopefully see that there were a lot of people who cared enough about them and their education, to come to their school and make it more vibrant and fun place to learn.
To those that came out for Team Give and Get NYC, thank you: Alison Art, Dustin Growick, James Posner, Jason Kahan, Jonathan Essa, Massimo Pennisi, Marshall Weaver, McKenzie Mahoney, Meghan Dockery, Michael Bamford, Paul Costa, and Sasha Growick. It meant a lot to me that I was able to share something I love to do with friends. We had a lot of laughs, and got a lot of paint in places it didn’t belong (don’t worry, we cleaned up).
I’ve posted some pictures from our day at PS 11 below (click to enlarge). If you’re interested in seeing what went on at other schools on New York Cares Day, check out their blog by clicking here.