Jamie Infanti, 16, of Galloway Township, is helping at a school and orphanage in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, this week.

Provided by Infanti family

Jamie Infanti, of Galloway Township, will travel to a third-world country for the first time this week, helping with projects at the Hogar Escuela Armando Rosenberg school and orphanage in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

 “I’m looking forward to being able to help out with something hands-on rather than just donating (money),” said the 16-year-old sophomore at Absegami High School. “I’m going to be doing real work and working with the kids.”

Starting Tuesday, she will write about her five-day experience on a Press of Atlantic City blog, which can be found at www.pressofatlanticcity.com/blogs.

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Infanti is a member of Interact, the high school service club affiliated with Rotary International. Two Rotary districts in southern New Jersey, composed of about 75 clubs, have supported the orphanage and school with donations of time, money and goods since the 1980s.

In addition to housing 140 orphans, the institution runs day schools for more than 1,000 impoverished children.

There are 14 teenagers going on the annual trip this year and seven adults, said Rotarian Joel Kopke, 61, of Galloway Township.

It’s the biggest Rotary group that has ever gone to the orphanage, said Kopke, who has led the trip for several years.

The group will paint some of the rooms, repair a wall, work on establishing a recycling program and help start a local Interact program at the orphanage, Kopke said. Cumberland County College student Patrick Massaro, of Vineland, will look into starting a sustainable garden there, Kopke said.

‘Forgotten Patriots’

Katharine Little, a seventh-grade student at Northfield Community Middle School, is the state winner of the Daughter of American Revolution's 2012-13 essay contest.

The theme was “Forgotten Patriots Who Supported the American Struggle for Independence.” Little focused on Prudence Wright, of Pepperell, N.H., who dressed as a man and fought the loyalist Tories — including her own brothers — and British soldiers who came through town.

Little will present her essay to the New Jersey Daughters of the American Revolution convention April 19 in Princeton, Mercer County.

Irish honors

Joe Bellucci, of Upper Township, was “Best Dressed Gentleman”; Eileen Fean, of Sea Isle City, was “Best Dressed Lady”; and Mickey and John Valinis, of Sea Isle City, were “Best Dressed Couple” in the AARP Chapter 710 Saint Patrick’s Day Luncheon at The Lobster Loft Restaurant in Sea Isle City March 14.


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