SGA seeks to help students displaced after house fire

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The Student Government Association (SGA) is seeking assistance in providing financial contributions and items to the five students who lost everything in a house fire last week. No one was injured in the fire.

From Feb. 23 to March 7, faculty, staff and students can bring donations to the SGA office located on the main level in the Chamberlain Student Center.

“I wanted to offer any type of help that I can provide not just as SGA president but as another person,” said SGA president Anthony Wohlrab. “I wouldn’t want to see anyone that has lost everything not get any help.”

Wohlrab, a senior entrepreneurship and management major, got right to work after hearing about the fire that happened on Valentine’s Day.

He said he immediately sent Justin Panecki, one of the five students living in the house, a Facebook message offering to help find him a place to stay or a way to provide food.

The morning after, he met with Rowan University President Dr. Houshmand to discuss donation efforts to provide relief. Wohlrab said he decided on a donation bin because he knew it would be the fastest way to collect items.

“I thought we needed to do something immediate and ask people on campus to donate things such as gift cards, household items and toiletries,” Wohlrab said. “I feel that if we shared this message with faculty, staff and students, they might be able to relate to it in some way, shape or form.”

An email went out Monday to all Rowan employees and students asking the “University community to help the students get back on their feet as they continue their undergraduate studies.”

Wohlrab is in the midst of compiling a list of items the students need. He said emails have been pouring in asking what items the five men need most.

“My inbox is literally flooded with people asking what size clothing, what size bedding and who can they make a check out to,” Wohlrab said.

The SGA president has received emails from Board of Trustees, administration, staff, department chairs and coaches, just to name a few.

He said he is looking for gift cards to various stores such as grocery stores, Walmart, Target, Walgreens and Footlocker.

“They lost all of their household appliances like toasters and pots and pans, and they all loved cooking,” Wohlrab said. “So they were looking to see if I could help with kitchen appliances.”

After talking to the five students, Wohlrab said the men are also in need of basic toiletries, such as deodorant and toothpaste.

SGA is also taking monetary contributions to provide relief, Wohlrab said he hopes to raise $1,500.

“I’d rather set a realistic goal and accomplish it rather than set a higher goal and not be able to reach it,” he said.

As of Tuesday night, the men were gifted with meal plans provided by Gourmet dining.

Wohlrab also plans on reaching out to the Glassboro community in hopes to gather more donations.

According to the president, a Facebook page titled ProfRelief is also in the works to get the word out. More email blasts will also be sent out over the following week.

After all the donations are compiled, Wohlrab said SGA plans to donate whatever remaining items, and money, the men still need.

Anyone who has questions about items they can donate are told to contact Anthony Wohlrab directly at SGAPresident@rowan.edu.

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