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NEW YORK, NY, November 16, 2017 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway employees were in the Christmas spirit, joining General Counsel Timothy Rooney Jr. at the inaugural "Wrapped with Love" volunteer event to assist those in need during the holiday season on November 13th in the casino's Good Time Room. The supportive staffers wrapped toys that will be donated to Catholic Charities and the Yonkers-based Aisling Irish Community Center as part of 11th Annual Christmas Spirit Coat & Toy Drive. The gifts will assist the organization's local families this upcoming holiday season.
Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director of Catholic Charities, and Orla Kelleher, Executive Director of Aisling Irish Community Center, were on hand for the festivities to accept the donations. Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano, Assemblyman Gary Pretlow, Yonkers City Council President Liam McLaughlin, Yonkers City Council Member Michael Sabatino, joined Tim Rooney Jr. in support of the program, reminding the public that there is need in Westchester County. Empire City's COO Bob Galterio was also in attendance.
Tim Rooney Jr., on behalf of Empire City Casino, was more than in the Christmas spirit, surprising Monsignor Sullivan with a generous $10,000 check donated to Catholic Charities to assist with essentials that might be needed by families.
Scott Nicholson, president of the Gander Group's eastern corporate office, also participated in today's gift-wrapping and donation. For the past several years, a truckload of new toys has been donated to the drive by Josh Blake, CEO of the Gander Group, a California-based company. Mr. Blake has made considerable toy donations to the drive for six consecutive years, clearly illustrating commitment and loyalty, which are important pieces of the company's mission.
Another annual key contributor to the effort is John Lennon, owner of Yonkers-based Smart Move & Storage, who generously donated his company's services to transport all of the wrapped toys to Catholic Charities' headquarters.
During the first 10 years of the initiative, Empire City has collected 10,000 toys and 3,500 coats to families and children in need. The community effort, now in its second decade, is underway and will continue through November 30th. Donations are being accepted throughout November at the casino's promotions booth. Patrons are asked to bring new, unwrapped toys and/or new or gently used coats which will go towards helping families and children in need.
Though Westchester County is often considered to be an affluent and wealthy community because of its median income of $83,422, there are still extreme pockets of poverty (nearly 10 percent living in poverty), and 31 percent of that population is under the age of 17. In addition, 12 percent of families do not have anyone working in the household, and 52 percent of those in poverty are single parents. Those assembled at today's event encouraged both corporations and individuals to give back to the community.
For more information on Empire City Casino visit http://www.empirecitycasino.com.
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