[Hpn] easter holidays

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Fri, 28 Apr 2000 23:51:45 -0400


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Volunteer shows `another world' to kids at shelter
            BY PAOLA IUSPA=20
            Herald Writer=20
           =20
            For the kids who had to spend the weekend at downtown =
Miami's New Life Shelter, Easter could have been a pretty bleak holiday. =


            Then Paulina O'Shea showed up.=20

            O'Shea, a Key Biscayne resident who heads a group called =
Ninos para Ninos (Kids for Kids), came Saturday morning carrying plenty =
of brown-paper Easter baskets. As she poured candy and goodies on the =
bare, wooden table in the dining room, children surrounded her, =
attracted by tons of treats.=20

            As if in a trance, with their eyes focused on the candy, =
they asked O'Shea for permission to grab the goodies.=20

            ``This is what these children need . . . to feel special,'' =
O'Shea said.=20

            Besides delivering Easter baskets to the shelter at 3620 NW =
First Ave., O'Shea wants to do more -- like bringing architects, =
landscapers, lawyers, dentists and other island residents to share their =
time and skills with those living in the shelter.=20

            ``I would like adult volunteers to interact with the =
children so kids could spend less time at the shelter,'' O'Shea said. =
``Volunteers could show them there is another world out there, and =
motivate them to stay in school and work hard to reach their dreams.''=20

            O'Shea, also a volunteer coordinator with the Catholic =
Archdiocese of Miami, is trying to gather residents to form a coalition =
of volunteers in which people from many trades and nonprofit groups can =
team up to help families at the temporary shelter.=20

            ``There are many people in Key Biscayne who can afford to =
help and want to help, but they don't know how to go about it,'' she =
said. ``I have already spoken to many people and they are willing to =
volunteer.''=20

            The shelter, administered by Catholic Charities since =
January, houses 14 drug-free homeless families, mostly single parents, =
for up to six months. The families pay 30 percent of their income, if =
they have any, to offset some expenses.=20

            At the shelter, adults are required to look for jobs and =
provide copies of the submitted job applications.=20

            The shelter is funded through private grants and donations.=20

            Other groups who have been helping the shelter welcome the =
idea of a coalition.=20

            ``I think it is a wonderful thing, and we would like to =
collaborate,'' said Joan Andros, a Key Biscayne resident and part of a =
12-member group called The Friends of the New Life Shelter. ``We want to =
do the landscaping and the sprinkler system, but we don't have the =
money. Paulina is an accountant and knows how to apply for grants. We =
need her advice.''=20

            O'Shea started Ninos para Ninos seven years ago, asking =
children from St. Anges Catholic Church to bring donations for needy =
kids. A year ago, O'Shea began focusing her attention on the shelter.=20

            Olga Golik, the shelter's program director, said O'Shea is =
doing many things for the shelter.=20

            ``She has already organized field trips, Easter baskets and =
contacted an architect to work on the shelter renovation,'' she said.=20

            O'Shea said neither the coalition nor Ninos para Ninos =
accept cash.=20

            ``We would rather have someone buy whatever families need =
and bring it to the shelter,'' she said.
           =20
            =20
            =20
            =20
            =20


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Volunteer shows `another world' to kids at=20 shelter

BY PAOLA IUSPA=20

Herald Writer=20

For the kids who had to spend the = weekend=20 at downtown Miami's New Life Shelter, Easter could have been = a=20 pretty bleak holiday.=20

Then Paulina O'Shea showed up.=20

O'Shea, a Key Biscayne resident who heads a group called = Ninos=20 para Ninos (Kids for Kids), came Saturday morning carrying = plenty of=20 brown-paper Easter baskets. As she poured candy and goodies = on the=20 bare, wooden table in the dining room, children surrounded = her,=20 attracted by tons of treats.=20

As if in a trance, with their eyes focused on = the=20 candy, they asked O'Shea for permission to grab the goodies. =

``This is what these children need . . . to feel = special,''=20 O'Shea said.=20

Besides delivering Easter baskets to the shelter at 3620 = NW First=20 Ave., O'Shea wants to do more -- like bringing architects,=20 landscapers, lawyers, dentists and other island residents to = share=20 their time and skills with those living in the shelter.=20

``I would like adult volunteers to interact with the = children so=20 kids could spend less time at the shelter,'' O'Shea said.=20 ``Volunteers could show them there is another world out = there, and=20 motivate them to stay in school and work hard to reach their = dreams.''=20

O'Shea, also a volunteer coordinator with the Catholic=20 Archdiocese of Miami, is trying to gather residents to form = a=20 coalition of volunteers in which people from many trades and = nonprofit groups can team up to help families at the = temporary=20 shelter.=20

``There are many people in Key Biscayne who can afford to = help=20 and want to help, but they don't know how to go about it,'' = she=20 said. ``I have already spoken to many people and they are = willing to=20 volunteer.''=20

The shelter, administered by Catholic Charities since = January,=20 houses 14 drug-free homeless families, mostly single = parents, for up=20 to six months. The families pay 30 percent of their income, = if they=20 have any, to offset some expenses.=20

At the shelter, adults are required to look for jobs and = provide=20 copies of the submitted job applications.=20

The shelter is funded through private grants and = donations.=20

Other groups who have been helping the shelter welcome = the idea=20 of a coalition.=20

``I think it is a wonderful thing, and we would like to=20 collaborate,'' said Joan Andros, a Key Biscayne resident and = part of=20 a 12-member group called The Friends of the New Life = Shelter. ``We=20 want to do the landscaping and the sprinkler system, but we = don't=20 have the money. Paulina is an accountant and knows how to = apply for=20 grants. We need her advice.''=20

O'Shea started Ninos para Ninos seven years ago, asking = children=20 from St. Anges Catholic Church to bring donations for needy = kids. A=20 year ago, O'Shea began focusing her attention on the = shelter.=20

Olga Golik, the shelter's program director, said O'Shea = is doing=20 many things for the shelter.=20

``She has already organized field trips, Easter baskets = and=20 contacted an architect to work on the shelter renovation,'' = she=20 said.=20

O'Shea said neither the coalition nor Ninos para Ninos = accept=20 cash.=20

``We would rather have someone buy whatever families need = and=20 bring it to the shelter,'' she=20 said.

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