It’s been seven years since a shooter killed 20 children and six adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown. On Friday, a community drive was held in New Britain -- turning the time marking the tragedy into a day of giving.
The Love Wins Community Drive is conducted in honor of one of the victims, Ana Marquez-Greene. Her mother, Nelba Marquez-Greene, works for Central Connecticut State University.
“It just warms my heart and it’s very special that we’re able to support Nelba on this day and her family,” said Courtney McDavid, a special project administrator at CCSU who is also one of the drive’s organizers. “I think it speaks to the Central family, the community, and the state of Connecticut.”
The event takes place on campus, where volunteers receive people who come to donate toys, toiletries, and food.
“It’s a good cause and it’s sad that it happened the way that it happened, but I’m glad that her family was able to do that for others,” said Patricia Martin of New Britain, who dropped off a box of food -- some canned goods and boxed dinners.
McDavid said the event will happen annually.
“Last year, we had about 180 volunteers,” she said. “This year, we have about 270 volunteers, so it definitely expanded this year and the donations have definitely increased from what I’ve seen so far this morning.”
The items collected will be donated to families living in New Britain. McDavid expects at least 1,000 families to benefit from the drive.