Diane Taylor – Pass It Along - 2/27/14

Posted on February 27, 2014

Today I had the pleasure of naming my first hero of 2014, Diane Taylor of Pass It Along.  Diane was inspired to start Pass It Along (PIA) in 2001 after a group of neighborhood teenagers asked her to help them collect food for a local food pantry.  She realized there were a number of young people in her immediate community who had excellent ideas for community service activities and volunteerism, but just needed some adult guidance and the appropriate tools to get the ball rolling.  So with that, she decided to leave her full time job and start Pass It Along, a non-profit that gives young people the opportunity to plan, execute, lead, and participate in initiatives to bring about positive change in their community and state.  This model has allowed Pass It Along to start and continue numerous programs that help a wide array of needs.  Today’s specific program I was able to take part in was called “Grandparents Gone Wired”.  Students from Newton High School came to Liberty Towers, an independent senior living facility in Newton, to teach resident seniors how to properly and effectively use their computers, ipads, and cell phones, in order to stay connected to their friends and families.  It was great to see so many young people helping to teach their elderly friends how to be tech savvy.  Diane has really tapped into an area of volunteerism that can continue to grow and change with the youth in the community.  The Pass It Along model is clearly working and their staff and volunteers are reaching out to help so many fellow citizens in need.  I am honored to name Diane a New Jersey Hero and look forward to seeing what our Pass It Along youth will come up with next!  For more details on Pass It Along, please visit their website:  http://www.passitalong.org/

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