Upper Pottsgrove Girl’s Birthday Gifts Were For Others

Hello Kitty Attracts Girl's Birthday Gifts For Others

Jenna Shea and West Pottsgrove Elementary School Principal Terri Koehler after Friday’s delivery

STOWE PA – A couple of weeks ago, 8-year-old Jenna Shea unfurled her most decorative wrapping paper, featuring a “Hello Kitty!” design that mother Tanya said her daughter considers a favorite, and covered an open-top box with it. Then she made a sign, asking for donations of pencils, glue sticks, crayons, and other school supplies for “kids who do not have money to buy them.”

She put the box out, of all places, at her Sept. 1 (Sunday) birthday party held in her family’s Upper Pottsgrove Township home.

On Friday (Sept. 13), items Jenna received in lieu of birthday gifts, as well several others she collected from donor boxes placed at West Pottsgrove Elementary School and elsewhere, were personally delivered to teachers and principals who said they would ensure the supplies reached those in need.

West Pottsgrove Principal Terri Koehler accepted the items from her former student – Jenna is attending Immaculate Conception Academy in Birdsboro for the first time this year – with a hug and a smile. Deliveries also made their way across school district boundaries, to kindergarten teachers Jacinda Bartolucci and Laureen Gresko at Pottstown’s Rupert Elementary School.

Tanya Shea was surprised by the generous response to her daughter’s effort. Jenna’s collections, she said, included donations of “backpacks, markers, crayons, pencils, pens, sharpeners, pencil cases, writing paper, glue … and the list goes on.”

Shea is proud, expectedly so, of Jenna, who besides having proven herself a capable non-profit organizer, also is involved in Pottsgrove Youth Cheer and the Girl Scouts. She’s thankful, too, for friends, neighbors and strangers who took heart in a young girl’s hope that the day of her birth could recognize something more.

Photo from Tanya Shea

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