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Community leaders act as celebrity waiters to help disadvantaged youth | News

Trinity Community members gathered last week to share a meal and support a nonprofit organization that is making a difference in the lives of students and teachers.

Marjorie’s Hope has exceeded its goal of raising $30,000, leaving its founder Debbie Chakowski in tears with the good news being passed on to her.

“It’s pretty amazing,” Shakosky said.

Shakovsky founded the nonprofit organization in memory of her sister Marjorie, who was the victim of a drunk driving accident. Schakowsky said Marjorie was passionate about volunteering, and today her children and grandchildren continue her legacy by being part of the nonprofit organization dedicated to helping others.

The benefits of the third annual Celebrity Waiter lunch were held at Seven Springs Golf & Country Club, with River Ridge High School Principal Tony Zetsche Olds as guest speaker. Tables have been awaited by community leaders and business owners.

Among the co-stars was Debbie’s son Brandon Spencer, along with Beamon Batty, lead singer of Crossfire Creek Band. Derek Pontellitz, CEO, Pontelites Financial Advisors; County Commissioner Jack Mariano; School Board Member Megan Harding; Sarah Mollo, Solicitor General for the Sixth District Court Pinellas/Pasco; Steve Farrell, CEO/Owner Farrell Roofing; Stacy Kemp, founder of the law firm Kemp Rogge & Greene; And much more.

Zetzsche-Olds shared the stories of two former students who benefited from Marjorie’s Hope. One was a young girl who lived outside a tent and had few clothes, her dress coded for wearing spaghetti straps, which were the cleanest top she owned that week. Another was a smart young student who scored the highest on her AP exams and lived in a house that only occasionally had electricity or a refrigerator.

Students come to the school from all different backgrounds, Zetzsche-Olds said, and sometimes it’s up to teachers to determine who might need a little extra help. Marjorie’s Hope provides schools with not only supplies but clothing, personal hygiene, products, prom attire, and community-based scholarships. Even teachers from Pasco County can shop outside the boutique designed to serve them – a first of its kind in the country.

Today, the nonprofit provides more than 4,000 backpacks stuffed with school supplies and you’ll need volunteer help to get them ready on July 30.

“Marjorie’s hope is fulfilling a need, it’s a blessing,” said Cynthia Armstrong, a member of the school board. “Not only do they provide supplies, they will provide assistance whenever they need it.”

Jessica Meek, an assistant principal at River Ridge High School and a board member of Margory’s Hope, said the nonprofit helps even off the field. She remembered the excitement she had on the first day of school with her new backpack, her supplies and clothes, and how she was now working in schools and had seen students who had not been so lucky.

“The impact that Marjorie’s Hope is having is huge,” Mick said. “I remember the days when we started packing in the living room and now it’s turned into 4,000 backpacks. It turned out to be incredible.”

Marjorie’s Hope continues to need volunteers and community support to make a difference in the lives of schoolchildren from elementary, middle, and high schools across Pasco, Pinillas and Hernando counties. To learn more about the nonprofit, follow its Facebook page.

Celebrity waiters

Brian Piras, congressional candidate; Curtis Low Assistant. Office of the Deputy Real Estate Appraiser. Derek Pontilitz, CEO, Pontilitz Financial Advisors; Ed Burke, State Farm Agent, of Trinity; Eva Fergus, the chief district attorney for Pasco County; Jack Mariano, Pasco County Council Commissioner; Jackie Puri, REMAX Realty; James Mallo, Pasco County Sheriff’s Office; James Morris, owner of Morris Tree Service; Joey Depp, owner of Tumblr Construction. Lisa Shebe Gonzalez of the Pasco County Real Estate Appraiser; Marie Sornicki, Director of Marketing, Suncoast Roofing; Megan Harding of the Pasco County School Board; Regan S. Weiss, CEO of 43Inc; Sarah Mollo, Solicitor General for the Sixth Judicial Court Pinellas/Pasco; Stacy Kemp, founder of the law firm Kemp Rogge & Greene; Steve Farrell, owner of Farrell Roofing; Yvette Beamer, legal assistant, community events, and foundation director at law firm Lucas, Macyszn, and Dyer.

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