Stafford Township Girl Scout Troops Deliver Jared Boxes to Hospitals

Jul 25, 2018

Selling cookies this year apparently was a lucrative operation for Stafford Township Girl Scouts Troops 29 and 495. It was so good, the girls decided to give back to the community using some of the money they had earned.

“My troop was looking for an idea, and I came across Jared boxes online,” said Daisy Troop 29 leader Jennifer Giouzelis, who oversees a dozen first-graders. “I presented the idea to my girls, and they wanted to spend some of their cookie money on getting items for the kids. It was something they could put together themselves, which is why it really interested them.”

The Jared Box project was started in 2001 by the children of Our Lady of Victory School in State College, Pa., to honor their classmate and friend Jared, who had been diagnosed with an incurable brainstem tumor in 1999 and battled the cancer with courage and faith until Nov. 12, 2000.

Jared Boxes were inspired by the boy’s sense of humor and willingness to share his backpack of toys and games with other children while they made their doctor visits. According to the Jared Box Project website, “The boxes symbolize the importance of play and are filled with well wishes, hope and love. Over 200,000 Jared Boxes have been delivered across the United States.” A typical Jared Box is a plastic storage box filled with small gifts, toys, games and fun activities.

When the leaders and scouts in Brownie Troop 495 got wind of the idea – after seeing the other group’s flyer soliciting additional donations – they wanted in and asked to partner with Troop 29 to fill as many boxes as possible. After collecting hundreds of items, the troops gathered on May 22 for a packing party.

“The girls laid out all the items on tables, and each girl went down the line and selected items they wanted to include in their boxes,” Giouzelis said. “None of the boxes were the same. Some were made for boys or girls, younger or older kids. Together, we filled 65 boxes for sick children who visit the hospital, so they can pass the time while they are there.”

The girls dropped off 30 boxes to Southern Ocean Medical Center on June 30, and are scheduled to deliver another 35 to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick on July 26.

Led by Giouzelis, the Daisy Scouts from Troop 29 include Briar Longo, Adelyn Sikorski, Victoria Spirito, Sara Giouzelis, Jordyn Lewczak, Brynn Angelozzi, Ava Junker, Kylie O’Connor, Madeline Fischer, Catherine Miller, Savannah Fischer and Rylee MacIntyre.

Guided by Dayna Angelozzi, Ashley Bromiley, Victoria Vernon, Christy Mangone and Jennifer Frey, the Brownie Scouts from Troop 495 are Lyra Dellinger, Kai Angelozzi, Leila Gearl, Kaya Bromiley, Riley McLean, Laila Bromiley, Khloe Rochester, Gabriella Frey, Abbie Krill, Alexis Mangone, Makayla Vigilante, Riley McLean, Kalista Palmisano, Ella Naylor, Rhiannon Roddy and Isabella Simpson.

For more about the Jared Box Project, visit thejaredbox.com.

— David Biggy

biggy@thesandpaper.net

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