TAP Into Your Town's News

West Essex — News

Vero Amici Continues Dispersing Funds to Those in Need

Carolyne Volpe Curley

Monday, November 25, 2013 • 10:21pm

WEST CALDWELL, NJ - Vero Amici means “True Friends” in Italian, and by all counts, the West Caldwell charitable organization has gone out of its way this fall to provide real support to many members of the West Essex community. Just last month, the group’s president, Joe Garamella, presented $17,500 in contributions to five West Essex service organizations.

West Essex First Aid Squad Donation
On Nov. 18, Vero Amici continued their charitable outreach with a $3,800 donation to the West Essex First Aid Squad which will cover the cost of two “turnout” emergency uniforms consisting of jacket, pants and boots. On hand for the occasion were Garamella, President Emeritus Vinnie Christopher, Trustees Dominick Aiello, Patrick Aiello and Bob Ehnert along with members Carmen Cerreto and Gianni Siniscalchi. Garamella presented the check to West Essex First Aid Squad Captain David Black.

From left: Vero Amici member Gianni Siniscalchi, Trustees Patrick Aiello, Trustee Bob Ehnert, West Essex First Aid Squad Captain David Black, President Joe Garamella, member Carmen Cerreto, Trustee Dominick Aiello and President Emeritus Vincent Christopher  Credit: Carolyne Volpe Curley

According to Black, the issue with the uniforms is that they fit specifically by size and there are only a limited amount available right now for the EMT workers. If two workers arrive to assist on the rig and both wear the same size, and if there is only one set of apparel available in that size, one EMT will need to remain behind at the squad house. At the present time, 18 EMT’s have 12 uniforms at their disposal. Vero Amici’s generosity will allow the WEFAS to purchase two more.

West Essex First Aid Squad Captain David Black and Vero Amici President Joe Garamella
Credit: Carolyne Volpe Curley

“We were made aware that the squad was short two full turnout gear at a cost of $1900 per and we immediately responded and presented this to the donation committee which recommended funding both sets of turnout gear,” explained Vero Amici Trustee Dominick Aiello of West Caldwell. “At our regular meeting on Friday, the members voted unanimously to donate the $3800 to be used for the purchase of both sets.”

"You cannot put a value to what the squad means to the West Essex community. They save lives," Aiello continued. "The WEFAS needs more help and we urge other community support groups to help and contribute in any way that they can."

Turkey Donations
Aiello expressed that shortly after this donation, Garamella was contacted by Caldwell’s Director of Human Services Maria Burak who conveyed her immediate need for 30 turkeys and 10 turkey breasts to provide for Thanksgiving. “We were on it,” commented Aiello. “We picked them up at ShopRite today and delivered them to Maria immediately after.”

From left: Vero Amici Trustee Dominick Aiello, Caldwell’s Director of Human Services Maria Burak, President Joe Garamella, member Bob Davison and President Emeritus Vincent Christopher  Credit: Vero Amici

"To be able to provide those in need some help during this time of year is makes what Vero does even more special. This was the whole reason why we started Vero Amici," Aiello concluded. "It was to raise money to provide financial assistance to those in need in the West Essex community."

Since 2005, the 501c3 charity has raised more than $250,000 in donations and notably hosts only one fundraiser a year, the annual spring Casino Night. One hundred percent of the money raised goes back to those in need in the West Essex community.

TAP into your town! Get Your Town's News In Your Inbox: Click here to sign up.