November 09, 2015
Students in Camden are a little warmer today after a team of doctors, nurses and administrators from Cooper University Health Care visited H.B. Wilson Elementary School to deliver hundreds of sweatshirts.
The sweatshirts, emblazoned with the word "Camden," were intended as a token of goodwill and community from the hospital to the young residents of the city and, according to George Norcross, a member of the board of trustees at Cooper, a way for students to show pride in their city.
"It's been a long time since people walked around in sweatshirts that have 'Camden' on them," Norcross said on Monday. "We want to help restore a little pride."
"I like my Camden jawn. It fits good and looks good, just like me." – Quashawn Jackson, 13
All told, Cooper will provide 14,000 sweatshirts to students of all ages throughout the Camden School District. Monday's event launched the program.
"This is really going to give the kids the community spirit," said Janna Johnson, principal of H.B. Wilson Elementary School. "And, as the weather changes, these are going to help keep them warm."
All morning, children laughed as they held the navy blue sweatshirts, joking as they tried on different sizes and putting on the sweatshirts to match their friends.
"I like my Camden jawn. It fits good and looks good, just like me," said a smiling eighth grader, Quashawn Jackson, 13.
In addition to the clothing, students received a dose of healthy living information from Michael H. Goodman, chief of the department of pediatrics for Cooper, as well.
In a short presentation, Goodman noted that kids need to do three things to stay healthy: eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, get exercise every day and get at least nine hours of sleep a night.
"This is a symbol of our healthy partnership between the hospital and the community," said Goodman about the event. "It's a great way for them to keep warm and to support the community."
Students said they appreciated that the medical staff took time out of their busy schedules to visit their school.
"They could be out there doing a lot of stuff, but instead they are here with us," said Thomas Bagby, 13, an eighth grader.
"The people from Cooper didn't have to do this," said eighth grader Alfredo A. Marcucci, 13. "It's great that they took the time and they are doing this out of the kindness in their hearts."
PhillyVoice Managing Director Lexie Norcross sits on the Cooper Foundation Board of Trustees. Her father, George E. Norcross III is the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The Cooper Health System.