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Kids 4 Coleman

Photo: Heather Braddock

Ravenna – The Coleman Adult Day Services in Ravenna provides care and services for the elderly; services such nursing, personal care assistance, meals,  therapeutic and recreational activities. Four years ago, they faced budget cuts. These cuts would have limited the services they could provide for their patients. For the family members of one Coleman client, this budget cut was a call to action. With the help of their mothers and aunts, the teenage grandchildren of Steve and Rosemarie Mandalari decided they would create a charity for Coleman in their grandparents’ honor, and Kids 4 Coleman began.

Thursday, August 2nd, Kids 4 Coleman held its fourth annual benefit at the Coleman Adult Day Services facility. Dozens of companies donated to the benefit, allowing the teens to hold silent auctions for 52 items, ranging from Cancun vacations, Disney tickets and airline tickets to golf outings, movie tickets and yoga mats.

Maria Bowen, one of the granddaughters of the Mandalaris, explained, “Originally we started because our grandfather attends the Coleman Center here, and their funding got cut, and it broke our hearts because it’s such great work that they do here.” In addition to the silent auction, the teens have organized a bowling event and a dinner at Applebees. “This event is the favorite, we get the biggest turnout. It’s so nice to see all of the support.”

According to Coleman Development Executive Kimberly Hutson, “charity and philanthropy is a family tradition in [the teens’] family, and because their grandfather is a client of ours, this is up close and personal for them. Each year they raise a little bit more, and last year, they earned close to ten thousand dollars.” This year the teens earned just under eight thousand dollars. The money they raised will, according to Hutson, be placed into a “general operating funds, to be used helping cover building expenses and pay for client services.

More information, including avenues for donation, can be found at www.facebook.com/Kids4Coleman.