Let Me Shake Your Hand, Jenna Wincek

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wincekBy Susan Heckler

When you think about Girl Scouts, what comes to mind? Cookies of course, but the words “be prepared” and “do a good turn daily” are also closely associated.

Jenna Beth Wincek is a 17 year-old resident of Millstone Township who has been a Girl Scout since first grade. Now an Allentown High School student, she is preparing for her Gold Award. According to their website, “The Girl Scout Gold Award represents the highest achievement in Girl Scouting. Open only to girls in high school, this prestigious award challenges you to change the world—or at least your corner of it, and be eligible for college scholarships, too. By the time you put the final touches on your seven-step project, you’ll have solved a community problem—not only in the short term, but for years into the future.”

To earn her award, Jenna Beth has organized two events to serve the community. She is organizing Halloween themed math events at the Millstone Township Primary School on Friday, October 24th between 6-8pm and Newell Elementary School in Allentown on Thursday, October 16th from 6-8pm. At these events students and parents will trick or treat through 24 fun interactive math games. Jenna Beth entitled her events Halloboo Math and the goal of the events is to educate and encourage parents to use math with their children in a fun way every day. She has enlisted the help of fellow high school students for what sounds to be like a great mix of fun and learning. Children, ages 3 to 10, are encouraged to wear their Halloween costumes to the events and bring a bag to collect a treat at each game. Donations of new board games and/or new or gently used Halloween costumes will be accepted at the events. The collected items are going to be donated to Home-front in Lawrenceville whose mission is “to end homelessness in Central New Jersey by harnessing the caring resources and expertise of the community. We lessen the immediate pain of homelessness and help families become self-sufficient. We work to give our clients the skills and opportunities to ensure adequate incomes, and we work to increase the availability of adequate, affordable housing. We help homeless families advocate for themselves individually and collectively.”

If you are interested in being involved in the project, you can reach out to Jenna Beth at halloboomath@gmail.com. We would like to shake Jenna Beth’s hand for helping her community by providing great fun, a great learning experience, and teaching school kids about giving back and looking outside their own comfortable bubble to help others.

Photo: Jenna Beth Wincek is showing Shana Ruskin, a first grade student at Millstone Primary School, the Math Ball Toss game, which will be available to play during the Halloboo Math events.