Abby Edwards, a teenager from East Moriches, N.Y., is expanding a successful “Pajama Day” fundraiser initiative, originally based on Long Island, to the Hudson Valley region.
The event, which has raised over $6,500 for Anderson Center for Autism over the past few years, is scheduled this year for Friday, April 12.
Edwards developed the concept in honor of her brother, a resident at the center. Since the event’s inception, Edwards has secured the participation of hundreds of students, teachers and staff who donate funds for the right to wear pajamas to school in honor of autism awareness.
This year, Edwards is working to secure the participation of student-run clubs from Hudson Valley school districts to increase its impact. Henry H. Wells Middle School in Brewster and the Anderson Centerhave signed on as participants. Edwards is awaiting formal approvals from others in the region. New participants will be joined by East Quogue Elementary School, East Moriches Middle School, East Moriches Elementary School and Starbright Children’s Center in the effort to raise money and heighten awareness.
“My brother Riley is a full-time resident at Anderson Center for Autism, and I wanted to do something to help the organization that has made such an impact on his life. Beyond that, I want people to understand what autism is, and how people’s lives are touched,” Edwards said in a press released. “I have used a Power-Point presentation to help educate people about the event. Every person who wants to wear pajamas to school on Pajama Day donates $2, whether they are students, teachers, or staff. All of the funds go directly to Anderson Foundation for Autism in honor of my brother.”
For more information on the fundraiser or the Anderson Center, call (845) 889-9208 or visit andersoncenterforautism.org, where donations can be earmarked for this project by notating “Abby’s Pajama Day” in the “special instructions” section of the website.