Diocesan News

Student Raises Hand — and Funds To Help Teacher After Storm

The Tablet Staff

WINDSOR TERRACE — When St. Sebastian Catholic Academy teacher Stephanie Marchetti’s apartment in Middle Village was flooded by the remnants of Hurricane Ida on Sept. 1, she had a surprising savior.

After Manchetti posted updates about her ordeal on Facebook, one of her former students, Julia Manning, stepped up to help in a big way. 

The teacher faced a dire situation. Not only had she lost everything she owned, but her landlord then told her that she could no longer live in the apartment. She had to leave with just the clothes on her back.

Julia, who is now in the eighth grade at St. Sebastian, had Marchetti as her teacher back in kindergarten.

As soon as she heard about Marchetti’s situation, she told her mother, Amy, and together, they hatched a plan to help. The Mannings set up a GoFundMe page titled “Help Steph Marchetti Replace Her Lost Items” and asked for donations.

Stephanie Marchetti said the kindness of former student Julia Manning restored her faith in humanity after she lost all of her belongings in the rainstorm. (Photo: Currents News)

Soon, contributions started pouring in. As of Sept. 20, nearly $3,000 of the $4,000 fundraising goal has been raised. 

For Julia, the fundraising drive was a good way to say “thank you” to Marchetti, whom she remembered with fondness from her time as a kindergartener. “She was a fun teacher,” she said.

“It feels good to do something for someone who needs help, especially someone who is a great person,” Julia added.

The GoFundMe drive is a reminder of the importance of setting an example for youngsters about living out their Catholic faith, Amy Manning said.

“So often, we talk to our kids about the importance of helping others. But it’s more important to set an example by doing something,” she said.

For Marchetti, the Mannings’ generosity means more than monetary donations. “Of course I need the money to buy all the things I don’t have, but I really needed that faith in humanity again,” she told Currents News.

Editor’s note: To make a donation, visit: gofundme.com/f/help-steph-marchetti-replace-her-lost-items