By Gene Woods, president of the Bayonne Education Association
As I was preparing my lessons for my African American History classes and my Facing History and Ourselves classes, I was thinking about a question I have my students answer every Wednesday when we are together: “What have you done in the past seven days to improve the human condition?” I heard a great teacher talk about this when I attended a benefit dinner in October 2019.
I began to think about what could we do to support the people in our town who have to work every day while many of us have to stay home. So my wife, Stefanie, who is also the BEA’s membership chair, and I started thinking about the places in our town where some of our students work and it hit us: McCabe Ambulance Service. We know they work very hard on a regular basis and now they probably were working double or triple shifts.
So I contacted all of our executive board members and asked them what they thought. Everyone was in agreement: Vice President Matthew Ruttler, Treasurer Jennifer Circkirillo, Recording Secretary Lisa Sofranko, Corresponding Secretary Eleni Verardi and our Grievance Chair Jeff Gotch. Then, Stefanie contacted one of our former students, David, who works at McCabe’s. We told him what we wanted to do and he was thrilled. I called a local pizzeria and ordered everything and had it delivered. I really wanted to pick it up and bring it to them myself, but …. social distancing.
A few hours later, Mike McCabe called me and thanked our Bayonne Education Association for the warm gesture. Then, on his Facebook page Mike McCabe wrote:
A huge THANK YOU to all of the incredible people and groups that have sent food and goodie bags to the men and women of McCabe, who are out fighting this battle.
Your generosity and thoughtfulness means the world to us. Thank you Gene Woods and the #BayonneEducationAssociation for the Mona Lisa lunch!
Here is what we wrote on our Facebook page:
To show our appreciation of what our EMTs and First Responders are facing during the COVID19 pandemic the Bayonne Education Association provided lunch to our local ambulance company McCabe’s. We do this not for recognition but in the hope that our small gesture inspires others to do the same. #BeKind #theygotoworksowecanstayhome
Stay tuned because the BEA has more surprises – and donations – already planned.