The final tally is complete and, once again, ’s Jump Rope for Heart has broken its fundraising record for the American Heart Association, raising $4,742.
On March 30, nearly 85 students lighted the school’s multi-purpose room, glimmering from the nearly 1,000 glow sticks sold to support the event, and manned a variety of jump rope stations.
The annual event at the Caldwell school raises funds for the American Heart Association and asks friends and family to sponsor the children as they jump rope or engage in other heart-rate raising activities for 90 minutes. Held on a Friday evening in late March each year, the much-anticipated event has raised more than $50,000 since it began more than a decade ago.
"The school is just bursting with energy on Jump Rope for Heart night," said Nurse Maryann Ciesla. "The fundraising is part of it, but they have so much fun jumping rope. It really shows them that being active and doing something heart healthy can be fun."
In 2010, the American Heart Association recognized Ciesla and Lincoln School as the "National Award winner for the American Heart Association as the Heart Healthy School of the Year" by the New Jersey Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. Ciesla was presented with the Heart Healthy Award, given to one school in the country each year, for her work creating programs like Super Lunch, which inspired students to bring in food that met Ciesla's criteria of a healthy meal, and "Know Your Numbers" that educated district staff on the importance of knowing their blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels and body mass index.
Other programs have included Sleeping for Success, 5 for Fitness and last year's program, Team Up to Veg Out. Marci D. Robinson, regional director youth market for the American Heart Association, who presented the award to Ciesla in 2010, has attended the Jump Rope for Heart event each year since.
“I wouldn’t miss it,” said Robinson. “To see the children having this much fun while doing good is truly worth the trip.”
This article was provided by Caldwell-West Caldwell Schools.