Ambassador Activities, Projects and Fundraisers

Throughout the school year, Ambassadors spearhead various activities, community-wide projects, and school fundraisers, ultimately raising school spirit and morale amongst our fellow hawks! Here are just a few examples of past initiatives that our students have organized throughout the years, along with some pictures. We look forward to watching our program grow in the future!


EVERY SEPTEMBER - NEW STUDENTS ARE WELCOMED INTO RDMS BY AMBASSADORSEach September, Ambassadors kick off the new school year by pairing up with any students who have just moved into River Edge or Oradell from another city, state, or country, and then we welcome them into our River Dell family with a get-to-know-you breakfast. The Ambassadors and new students form a bond over an ice-breaker activity, and the Ambassadors check in with the new students throughout the school year. It's a great way for our new students to feel more at home and be connect with their peers in a relaxed, informal setting. Click here to view pictures: Ambassador/New Students


MARCH 2023 - BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT FOR TURKEY/SYRIA EARTHQUAKE: Ambassadors and Environmental Club teamed up to raise money for the American Red Cross. The fundraiser was kicked off with a bakesale, and culminated in a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, in the spirit of March Madness. Hundreds of students came out to support their fellow players and watch the competitions. The event was a huge hit, raising a grand total of $571.80. Click here to view pictures: March Madness 1 and March Madness 2 and March Madness 3


FALL 2022 - AMBASSADOR CAFE: Flavored coffees, teas and delicious breakfast treats were sold to staff every Monday for the months of November and December. Ambassadors coordinated pre-orders, making sure teachers received the proper items and delivering the goods. They marketed the cafe and got the word out to the staff in a timely manner. We had a blast putting a smile on teachers' faces each Monday morning. Click here to view pictures: Ambassador cafe


SPRING 2020 - AMBASSADORS SPREAD INSPIRATIONAL MESSAGES DURING PANDEMIC: In order to lift spirits and bring joy to our community, Ambassadors painted messages of positivity and inspiration onto cheerful rocks and placed them in unexpected locations throughout River Edge and Oradell. During these unpresented times, it was a true act of kindness to see our 8th graders bring a smile and happiness to their neighbors! Click here to view pictures: Inspirational Rocks


SPRING 2019 - RAISING PANCREATIC CANCER AWARENESS AND FUNDRAISERAmbassadors coordinated a multi-faceted fundraiser with staff and students, raising a grand total of $850 in order to support families and friends who have been diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer! Over the span of one week, the RDMS community participated in Physical Education Run/Walk ($5/lap was donated for the student who completed the most laps), Wear Purple Day, Pledge $1 for a Purple Heart during lunch periods, and the purple-themed bake sale. Congratulations to the 8th grader who ran 23 laps around the fields, and to all students and staff who made this amazing fundraiser a reality. Click here to view pictures: Pancreatic Cancer Fundraiser


SPRING 2018- PARKLAND, FLORIDA THERAPY DOG INITIATIVE: After the Parkland tragedy occurred, the Ambassadors wanted to help this community in mourning. Since many of our students are passionate about animals, so we decided on a fundraiser for The Humane Society of Broward County, who placed therapy dogs in the Parkland schools following the return of the students and staff after the shooting. The staff, students, and community in River Dell came together for an amazing fundraiser, and graciously donated $873.13, while also learning invaluable lessons about how therapy dogs bring tremendous comfort during a difficult time. Dr. O'Neil brought her therapy dog Hunny to RDMS to meet the winning homerooms, which was the reward for all their hard work and fundraising. Click here to view pictures: Parkland Fundraiser


FEBRUARY 2018 & FEBRUARY 2016 - VISITING ORADELL PUBLIC SCHOOL AND CHERRY HILL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: Ambassadors made about 80 new friends when they met Kindergarteners at Oradell Public School and Cherry Hill's New Bridge Center! Ambassadors read a story about friendship and discussed with the kindergarteners the qualities that make a good friend. The Kindergarteners came up with great descriptive words about their friends and even used vocabulary from their word lists, like being generous! After the story was read and the brainstorming was complete, Kindergarteners and Ambassadors met in small groups to create Friendship Flowers. The Ambassadors really showed their artistic side as they prepared colorful flower cards for each Kindergartener. Together, Ambassadors and Kindergarteners chose six words that describe what being a friend means to them and then wrote a word on each petal of the flowers. Through the activity, the Ambassadors and Kindergarteners talked and got to learn about each other. Many laughs were had and memories were made! See below for pictures from both trips. Click here to view pictures: Friendship Flowers with Kindergarteners at OPS and Friendship Flowers with Kindergarteners at Cherry Hill


NOVEMBER 2017 - KINDNESS ROCK GARDEN: Ambassadors wanted to spread some kindness throughout the River Dell community, and so they created a picturesque, unique Kindness Rock garden! This display is located next to the three 9/11 memorial trees at the Woodland Ave school entrance. Ambassadors thought of individualized inspiring phrases, and then had a lot of fun designing and painting each rock. The Ambassadors are very proud of this project, and hope that you will be continually encouraged by their enlightening messages!! Click below to view a picture of the garden. Click here to view pictures: Kindness Rock Garden


DECEMBER 2016 - BERGEN COUNTY HOUSING, HEALTH, AND HUMAN SERVICES CENTER (HOMELESS SHELTER) SERVICE PROJECTAmbassadors participated in a multi-faceted service project, which started out with learning about homelessness in Bergen County from Mrs. Julia Orlando (River Dell parent and Director of the Shelter). Then, Ambassadors visited 7th and 8th graders in their homerooms and presented a PowerPoint about homelessness and what students can do to make a difference. Following this education component, the Ambassadors then went on a field trip to visit the Shelter (bringing lots of cold weather donations with them such as socks, scarves, gloves, etc.) and got to experience homelessness first-hand by touring the facility and actually meeting with a few of the guests to hear about their life stories. It was eye opening and touching experience for the students! See below for a picture from our trip. Click here to view pictures: Bergen County Homeless Shelter


SPRING 2015 - ST. JUDE CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL: We raised $501.39 for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Ambassadors competed against themselves in Fundraiser they called, "Battle of the Bakesales." A variety of baked goods were made and sold by our Ambassadors for the school to enjoy!


SPRING 2014 - MAKE A WISH FOUNDATION: We raised $354.01 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Ambassadors organized a school-wide event called the Staff Showdown, which was a competition among staff members consisting of 6 events where teachers competed against each other or students (Karaoke on the Wii, Just Dance on the Wii, Mario Kart on the Wii, Sprint Run, Musical Chairs, and Head Shaving. Students voted for which teacher they want to participate in the events by placing pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, and dollars in containers during a voting period, and the teacher with the most money participated in the events. Click below to view pictures from the exhilarating event! Click here to view pictures: Staff Showdown Sprint Run and Staff Showdown Head Shaving and Staff Showdown Just Dance


SPRING 2013 MAKE A WISH FOUNDATION: We raised $1041.06 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Ambassadors hosted the event, Make-A-Wish Under the Stars a movie night which featured two movies, Wreck-It-Ralph in our Auditorium and The Sandlot which was shown on our lawn under the stars! The Ambassadors also prepared and ran our concession stand, helping the night become a huge success! Click below to view pictures and a thank you letter from the event! Click here to view pictures: Make-A-Wish Fundraiser Thank You Letter and Make-A-Wish Article from RD Patch


SPRING 2012 CANCER SUPPORT COMMUNITY: We raised $2700 for the Cancer Support Community. We had a series of Bake Sale Competitions after school. Students collaborated with other students in their Physical Education classes to decide what to offer and tied in healthy alternatives for snacks.


SPRING 2011 AMERICAN RED CROSS: We raised $225 for the American Red Cross to support Japan Disaster Relief. Our Ambassadors brought in baked goods to sell before and after school. We also sold bracelets which read the message "Hope for Japan" in both English and Japanese


SPRING 2010 SUSAN G. KOMEN BREAST CANCER AWARENESS: We raised $450 for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Ambassadors made and sold pink and white tye-die T-shirts featuring a pink breast cancer awareness ribbon. Take a look at one of our sample Ribbon T-Shirts and click here to see the picture in the Town News!


SPRING 2010 DONATION TO HAITI: We participated in a fundraiser called Penny Wars, for which all proceeds went towards helping Haiti. Students voted for teachers to engage in a "dare", such as getting their head shaved, pie eating contest, video game tournament and water balloon tournament. All pennies counted as a vote for the teacher, and all other money (change and bills) counted as a vote against the teachers. The culmination of events occurred on February 12th in the Auditorium at 1:45 p.m.


FALL 2009 MAKE A WISH FOUNDTION: The school voted on the Make-A-Wish Foundation as the charity to receive our donations. From November - February, we held bakesale competitions among our homerooms, and then donated all proceeds to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of New Jersey. We successfully raised $5,500 and partially adopted the wish of Kiaari, a 4-year-old girl who wished to go to Disney World! In past years, our fundraisers have also raised as much as $5,500 and we also sent a 6-year-old boy named Christian to Disney World to fulfill his Wish! Click here to view pictures: American_Cancer_Society_Thank_you_letter.pdf and Make A Wish - Town News Article and Make_A_Wish_-_Thank_you_letter.pdf and Make-A-Wish_2010_-_Kiaari_Disney.pdf


Some other examples of past charity donations include:

  • $850 donated to the Lustgarten Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer
  • 20 boxes donated to the Jared Box Project, which sends age-appropriate boxes filled with toys, games and activities to sick children at Hackensack University Medical Center
  • $873.13 donated to the Broward County Humane Society Therapy Dogs (Parkland, FL)
  • $501.39 donated to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
  • $12,395.07 donated to Make-A-Wish Foundation ($5,500 in March 2008, $5,500 in March 2010, $1,041.06 in June 2013, and $354.01 in June 2014)
  • $200 donated to American Red Cross for the Typhoon in the Philippines (with the help of the RDMS Library Club)
  • $200 donated to American Red Cross for the Tornadoes in the Midwest states (with the help of the RDMS Library Club)
  • $5,000 donated to American Cancer Society - Relay for Life
  • $3,476.34 donated to the Red Cross for Indian Ocean Tsunami Relief
  • $2,700 donated to the Cancer Support Community
  • $1,000 donated to the American Red Cross for Haiti relief
  • $450 donated to Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation
  • $416 donated to Special Olympics
  • $351 donated to the Journey's Program for art supplies (Journeys is a local art therapy grief group for children and adolescents affected by the serious illness or the death of a loved one)
  • $250 donated to American Red Cross for Japan Earthquake relief
  • 123 backpacks filled with school supplies donated to Hurricane Katrina victims
  • Many toys and gifts donated to holiday Toys for Tots program for children in need
  • 20,526 pop-tabs from aluminum cans donated to the Ronald McDonald House (Pop-tabs translated into money that Ronald McDonald House used to help their children and families)
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