Bids now being accepted for Veterans Square Monument!

The Veterans Square Foundation is in the process of accepting bids for Veterans Square Monument which will be constructed – and hopefully completed – this summer, if we have enough funding!  This is our last call to be a part of a community monument.  You can purchase a Freedom Paver as part of our Stepping Stone Campaign to have your family, a veteran, your business or organization recognized in Veterans Square Monument.  The pavers start at $125 for a 4 by 8″ brick.  Please see the attached brochure for details or other options.   
 
If you know a veteran who lived in Lower Makefield or Yardley at any time in his/her life, we will engrave his/her name on our Wall of Honor at no charge.   Details are also on the attached brochure.  
 
Deadline for both is April 17th, 2014!
 
If you know a mason or contractor who might like to work with a veterans cause and build our monument, it’s not too late.  Have them view our website for the bid documents www.VeteransSquare.org.  Bids are due May 1st.
 
Thank you for helping us honor those who make freedom possible for all!

Share

Pennsbury siblings share honors in Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

 

Devin Kawailani Barricklow, a Pennsbury High School junior, and Katia Kalei‘i Barricklow, an eighth grader at William Penn Middle School, are sharing honors received in the 2014 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.

Devin won two Silver Key Awards for poetry, the second year in a row that she has received this honor for her writing.  The poems selected for this year’s contest were “A Hole in Our Drywall” and “Entropy of the Hotpot.”  Devin has been writing poetry since elementary school and published her first poem in ninth grade.  Last year, she was also named a finalist in the 2013 Bucks County High School Poet of the Year contest.

Katia won a Gold Key Award for her essay, “Why Can’t High Schools Start Later in the Day?” a piece she researched and first drafted in her seventh grade English class. In November, she decided to enter the Scholastic contest, which led to a final edit and additional research.  Katia also won “Honorable Mention” for “Autumn Leaves,” a photograph of her sister Devin, a PHS junior. Works earning Gold Keys are forwarded to the national judging of The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards in New York City in February 2014.

Both sisters were honored at an awards ceremony in Philadelphia on March 22nd.

PHOTO CAPS: 1. Devin Barricklow in a picture entitled “Autumn Leaves,” which was taken by her sister Katia Barricklow, who won “Honorable Mention” for the photo in this year’s Scholastic Art & Writing Awards contest.

2. Katia Barricklow

Share

Learning life’s lessons, one box at a time

submitted by Melinda Myer, Troop leader #2401, #2421, Girl Scouts of Eastern PA, Sandy Run Service Unit

Another year of cookie booths, cookie rallies, and cookie order forms come around as we muster up the enthusiasm to spread words of encouragement to our troops. What makes this year different? If you live in the Northeast, you know the answer to this question. Freezing. Icy. Numbing. Bitter cold. These circumstances set the stage for a few of life’s lessons to be learned.

First, the kindness of others has never been so keenly felt as we set up our booth under light snowfall with temperatures hovering around 10 degrees. Bundled under several layers, we set up our boxes and put on our best smiles. Our hope was that the customers were not going to run for cover and skip over our colorful table of cookies and homemade signs. We were overjoyed when they stopped to talk and buy a few boxes of cookies. Upon hearing the stories of our generous customers, their kindness warmed our hearts and souls. It was the officer who stopped to buy a few boxes for his squad. It was the grandfather that was expecting his grandkids over for Sunday brunch. It was the young man who praised us on our perseverance and dedication. In many instances, it was the former Girl Scout leader, or Scout, or grandmother that had to buy a box to support us for being out in the cold.  

The second lesson we learned was teamwork. It was the first time my daughter, Kathryn, and I shared a cookie booth. We were like a well-oiled machine. She took out the boxes, while I set up the signs and money. She spoke to the customers, while I pointed to the boxes. She took off her gloves to make change, while I refilled our stock. As the snow got heavy, we took turns brushing it off the table. Just as the snow was beating us, our cookie mom arrived with her daughter, Anna. We moved to the trunk of the minivan while Kathryn took cover in the trunk to thaw and act as cashier. Anna’s energy served as beacon to our newly made cookie headquarters. It was that unsaid feeling of teamwork and camaraderie that shouted, “We are doing a great job! We just might make it through!”

In the end, when our shift was over, we felt proud, uplifted and warm inside. We may have started the day with only hope of selling a lot of boxes, but we left with so much more.

PHOTO CAP: Kathryn Myer (left) and Anna Flook on cookie duty. The girls have been Scouts since kindergarten.

Share

Neha Gupta receives Community Service Scholarship

by June Portnoy 

Yardley’s Neha Gupta, 17, a Pennsbury High School senior, was recently awarded a $5,000 Zinch Community Service Scholarship from the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS), an international organization dedicated to recognizing academic talent. 

The NSHSS believes in the importance of community service and making the world a better place, so it was no surprise that Neha received this scholarship, considering she founded her own non-profit organization at the young age of nine.

Although Neha is an AP Honors Student, she recognizes the importance of balancing schoolwork with community service.

In order to apply for the Zinch Community Service Scholarship, Neha was required to write a short essay describing why she thought she was “more than a test score,” emphasizing any leadership roles and community service projects in which she has participated.

Neha wrote about her non-profit organization, Empower Orphans. Its focus is to help create self-sufficiency by supplying these orphans with the tools they need to gain a basic education and technical skills to enable a sustainable livelihood leading to productive and positive contributions to society.

In addition, Empower Orphans provides food and clothing in order to establish an effective learning environment. It also provides medical supplies and health care to better enable a learning environment.

Neha explains that her idea for Empower Orphans was born during an annual vacation of visiting her grandparents who live in India. It is a Gupta family tradition to celebrate family birthdays by taking food and gifts to orphaned children.

As a young child, Neha went to these orphanages with her grandparents and played with the children during their visits. However, when Neha turned nine, she suddenly became aware of the harsh life these children endured.

 “These kids didn’t have money to go to school or get the medical treatment they needed,” she explains. 

When she returned from the visit, she told her parents she wanted to help the orphans by establishing her own organization. It started small with Neha gathering all her toys from her garage and hosting a yard sale to raise money for Empower Orphans.

She then started making crafts and selling them, along with crafts made by orphans. Her organization evolved when she reached out to corporations for sponsorship opportunities. Over the years, she has organized many fundraisers.

Initially, Neha’s organization focused on orphanages in India, but it later expanded to help underprivileged youth in this country, and more recently it has extended into South and Central America.   

“There is so much more to life than achieving a good grade,” says Neha.  “Although I recognize the importance of getting good grades, I believe that it’s equally as important to get involved in the community because it offers such a fulfilling experience.

“By running my global organization, I’ve gained awareness about worldwide issues and compassion for other people.”

Neha’s community service organization led her to her career choice.

She says, “I want to become a pediatrician, so I can continue helping children here and in third world countries. All kids have a right to medical care, and I want to be one of those doctors who offer them that service.”

For more information about Empower Orphans, visit www.empowerorphans.org.

PHOTO CAP: Neha Gupta

Share

Spring Village offering free caregiver advice

Spring Village’s “Serving Hearts” is now offering free help and information for caregivers of memory loss family members or friends.

Whether your loved one has mild or severe memory loss, one of the dedicated team members of “Serving Hearts” at Spring Village of Floral Vale can help you. Spring Village is a quaint, secured memory care community in Yardley committed to providing care with respect, love and understanding.  

Once you visit Spring Village’s community, you’ll experience a warm and welcoming atmosphere where staff understand your caregiving journey, so they can offer you the advice you need.

To schedule your free appointment with “Serving Hearts” at Spring Village of Floral Vale, located at 600 Township Line Road, call 215-497-3003.

Share

YingHua International School helps others around the world

When the students at YingHua International School (YHIS) in Princeton, NJ, heard about the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, they knew they must help. For two weeks, the students made handmade jewelry, decorations, and banana bread to sell and raise funds. They designed posters showing Typhoon Haiyan’s devastation and encouraging people to support their fundraising cause. Through sales at the Princeton Shopping Center and the YingHua International School, the students raised $1,200, which they donated to the Tzu Chi Foundation, an international relief organization with over 10 million volunteers and donors worldwide.

YHIS is the only Mandarin immersion school in the area. Offering preschool through sixth grade, their curriculum meets NJ Core Curriculum Standards and teaches Chinese Math and Singapore Science. YHIS also offers summer camp and Chinese tutoring. YHIS’s programs do not require prior Chinese knowledge. For information visit www.yhis.org or contact director@yhis.org.

Share

Piazza Nuova Lodge members send clothing to reservations

 

Barbara Lawless, a member of Piazza Nuova Lodge – Order Sons of Italy in America, and her two friends, Jennifer Gallagher and Lise Baxter, work together to pack clothing for shipment to impoverished American-Indian reservations every year. This year they concentrated their efforts on the tribes of Wounded Knee, Pine Ridge, Takini, and Red Cloud, South Dakota where the quality of life is very difficult, with issues of infant mortality, malnutrition and poverty.

Barbara and her friends coordinate the purchase of clothing with fellow Lodge member Bonnie Van Zelst with funds derived from a generous anonymous donation and funds from the Piazza Nuova Lodge, that enable the purchase of various clothing items such as coats, hoods, jeans, shirts and socks.

The Piazza Nuova Lodge is a nonprofit Fraternal Beneficiary Society that was chartered by the Order Sons of Italy in America in November 1992. The Lodge promotes fraternity amongst members, and extends that fraternity to the community at large. They conduct fundraisers to help and support many charities that they donate to on a national, state, and local level. They also provide educational scholarship awards for outstanding academic achievement to local high school students.

PHOTO CAP: From left, Jennifer Gallagher, Barbara Lawless, and Lise Baxter

Share

American Association of University Women (AAUW), Makefield Area Branch

The Makefield Area Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) welcomes all women who value education and who have achieved this goal by obtaining an associate, baccalaureate or higher degree from an accredited college or university.

AAUW is a national organization whose mission is to advance equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy and research. In addition to monthly meetings with programs of interest to both men and women, AAUW offers several small special interest groups that discuss literature, play Trivial Pursuit, encourage and support writers, and present Let’s Read Math™ programs to students in elementary grades, as well as support the PAGES™ program (Philadelphia Area Girls Enjoying Science™) which exposes sixth grade girls to a day of sharing scientific experiments with local women scientists at Chestnut Hill College.

The national umbrella tax-deductible organization of “AAUW Funds” assists women in sex discrimination lawsuits; teaches leadership skills to young college women; and supports women and girls in need of help to complete their educations.

The Makefield Area Branch of the AAUW awards college scholarships each year to high school graduates; holds a special annual recognition reception for seventh grade girls who have excelled in math and science, in order to encourage their pursuit in these areas of study; and awards a scholarship to a woman who is returning to, or remaining in, college to complete her degree.

The Makefield Area Branch has a diverse membership, and they welcome new members at any time in order to broaden the effectiveness of their mission.

On Saturday March 29th, AAUW will hold a fundraiser at the Makefield Township Building on Edgewood Road in Yardley, beginning at 1:00pm. The public is invited to bring antique items for appraisal. A charge of $15 will allow three small items to be appraised by a professional appraisal company. 

For more information about AAUW membership visit their website at www.makefield-pa.aauw.net or www.makefield-pa.aauw.net/contact.

Share

Be cool at the pool

Lower Makefield Township is now offering 2014 pool memberships at low rates. Enjoy four heated pools, three diving boards, plus a flume and speed slides. In addition, swim and dive teams, swim lessons, Mommy & Me sessions, water aerobics, swim camp and Aqua Zumba are available. You can also utilize their Wifi while there.

For more information contact the Lower Makefield Township Pool Office at 267-274-1105 or visit the Township website at www.lmt.org.

Share

Pennsbury Scholarship Foundation

Since 1956, the Pennsbury Scholarship Foundation (PSF) has existed to help Pennsbury graduates achieve their goal of higher education. In 2013, the PSF awarded $106,000 in scholarships to 63 graduates. Over the past 58 years, approximately $2.2 million in scholarships has been awarded to more than 1,300 Pennsbury graduates by the PSF.

These PSF’s scholarships are possible because of income from the endowments and low-risk investments; repayment of loans by former recipients; gifts made in honor or memory of loved ones; as well as gifts from local businesses and community organizations.

Additionally, the PSF’s endowed namesake scholarship program enables families to maintain the spirit and memory of their loved ones, while helping students achieve their post high school educational goals. In 2014, 28 namesake scholarships will be awarded in memory of 25 former community members, including 12 graduates of PHS. All scholarships are based on four equally-weighted criteria: academic achievement, financial need, character and leadership. These awards are comprised of one-half grant and one-half zero-interest loan, repayable starting 6 months after the student leaves college.

Pennsbury graduates are encouraged to apply for a scholarship every year that they are working toward an undergraduate degree. The 2014 application form will be available on the PSF website, www.pennsbury.k12.pa.us (“Foundations” link), and in the guidance offices at Pennsbury High School. The deadline for the return of all application components is April 11th, 2014. The screening of applications will be held on June 1st, 2014. Community volunteers who wish to assist with the screening are invited to participate and should contact PSF for more information. A reception for 2014 PSF scholarship recipients will be held on Tuesday, June 24th, 2014.

The PSF is administered by an independent, all-volunteer Board of Directors made up of 19 community members and four school district representatives who are responsible for fundraising, investments, and overseeing the awarding of grants and loans.

Any person, business or organization interested in making a donation to the PSF, establishing an endowment, or obtaining more information should call 215-428-4145 or e-mail: scholarships@pennsbury.k12.pa.us. Donations can also be mailed to the PSF at P.O. Box 338, 134 Yardley Avenue, Fallsington, PA 19058-0338.

The PSF is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and all donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent permitted by law.

Share