Oceanside students help keep community warm

By Kim Lincoln | Feb 21, 2012
Photo by: Kim Lincoln Oceanside High School students, from left, Liz Brown, Natasha Shacklett and Jessica Smalley build a window insert Feb. 21 at First Universalist Church in Rockland.

Rockland — Students from Oceanside High School in Rockland spent some of school vacation week giving back to the community.

About 40 students signed up to help build window inserts with Window Dressers, a program that began through Dick Cadwgan and Frank Mundo, parishioners at First Universalist Church on Broadway.

The window inserts consist of wooden frames wrapped in clear crystal polyolefin, and are sealed by a quarter-inch gasket of weather strip foam to act as a barrier between inserts and windows.

Since the inserts were placed in the windows at the church, the church has saved 25 percent on its heating bills.

Last year, Window Dressers made about 200 inserts and has made 1,400 this season.

Through donations and volunteer help, about 30 percent of the inserts are given away to the needy. The inserts help save between 15 and 25 percent off fuel bills.

Mundo said if the volunteers produced this amount of inserts each year for the next 10 years, it would save $3.3 million in oil costs and prevent 5,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide from entering the environment.

Oceanside High School students are required to perform community service each school year: 20 hours for seniors, 15 hours for juniors, 10 hours for sophomores and five hours for freshmen.

Teacher Paul Desaulniers said some of the students volunteering with this project have already completed their community service hours, but felt strongly about giving back.

"It's exciting to see the kids interested," Desaulniers said.

Along with Desaulniers, teachers Jane Tompson and Bruce Gamage are also volunteering with the project.

Mundo and Deaulniers said they hope to make this an annual event.

Oceanside High School senior Liz Brown places double-sided tape on the edge of the window insert frame. (Photo by: Kim Lincoln)
Oceanside High School senior Taylor Gelman, front, and junior Natasha Shacklett, back, shrink the plastic onto the frames. (Photo by: Kim Lincoln)
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