In upcoming newsletters, POTS will highlight some of the countless individuals who support the organization throughout the year. This month we are delighted to profile Grace Sanko. Grace is a freshman at Convent of the Sacred Heart in Greenwich, CT. She has been volunteering and donating to POTS for the last year. Grace learned about POTS during a mass at Resurrection Church in Rye and was inspired to help. She decided to do her eighth grade service with us, creating gifts for adults in crisis during the holidays. She found the experience to be so rewarding that she continued to work with POTS, even after her service requirements were fulfilled. Since beginning high school, Grace has hosted a clothing drive and put together a service project to benefit the individuals who utilize POTS’ shower program. The shower program serves 20-25 homeless men and women each day, providing them with a warm shower, hygiene items, and clean clothes. Grace’s project provided socks filled with toiletries for these individuals.
Imagine coming out of a nice, hot shower and having to put on the same dirty, damp socks you had on the previous day or three. It’s an unpleasant thought, and was a light bulb moment for Grace. Clean socks are a small comfort, something many of us take for granted. For many, it is not only a comfort, but a health issue—particularly for individuals with diabetes or open wounds on their lower extremities. Luckily, Grace understood this need when she created her school service project. She worked with individuals in her community and encouraged them to donate socks and small hygiene items, which she packaged together to create gifts for those who utilize the POTS shower program.
Here is Grace’s description in her own words:
“It amazes me how one day someone could think they live pretty well off, but the next day, find themselves on the streets. I want to know that if I was having a rough time in my life, that I could turn to an organization and that they would be there to help me make it through the hardship. I can confidently say that POTS satisfies that desire. With POTS, I have been making toiletry kits out of socks. What I do is I take a pair of socks and in them I put things such as toothbrushes, shampoo, nail clippers, and things like that. I did this several times but I remember the first time I went to deliver the socks and how grateful the people were. I didn’t realize how happy it actually made others and how much my socks were really needed until I saw it all for myself. This has been an incredible learning experience and I plan to continue making my socks and doing work for POTS to make a change in someone’s day.”
If you or someone you know is interested in hosting a drive, donating, or volunteering like Grace did, please visit www.potsbronx.org for information on how to get involved.