Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center hits $100K Warm the Children fundraising goal

  • The Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center presents a bundle of cash and checks to Warm the Children organizer Pat Maleno on Wednesday. STAFF PHOTO/JULIAN MENDOZA

  • Carson Clark, 7, who earned the most donation money after breaking 260 boards at the 2021 “break-athon,” passes off the envelope of money raised for Warm the Children to organizer Pat Maleno. STAFF PHOTO/JULIAN MENDOZA

  • Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center owner and instructor David Johnson speaks to Warm the Children organizer Pat Maleno as she accepts the studio’s donation on Wednesday. STAFF PHOTO/JULIAN MENDOZA

Staff Writer
Published: 2/3/2022 4:40:25 PM
Modified: 2/3/2022 4:39:03 PM

GREENFIELD — In its 19th year supporting the Greenfield Recorder’s Warm the Children charity, the Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center more than doubled its fundraising total from 2020 and eclipsed its $100,000 cumulative goal.

Owner and instructor David Johnson presented a bundle of cash and checks in the amount of $7,501.50 to charity organizer Pat Maleno Wednesday evening. The 2021 total — raised through collection jars, a booth at the Great Falls Festival, the “break-athon” board-breaking event and sales of kindling — brings the 19-year fundraising total to $103,356.02.

Maleno said the 2021 clothing charity amassed $64,500 and provided new coats and accessories to around 800 children prior to Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center’s presentation. She said the addition of the studio’s donation is “just amazing.”

By comparison, the Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center raised $3,056 for Warm the Children in 2020. The business held a brief ceremony to celebrate the 2021 donation at its studio Wednesday evening, gathering the community of martial artists for a photo and a brief expression of thanks from both parties.

“You guys have provided for those who don’t have boots or coats or winter clothing,” Maleno said. “I just want to thank you all for that.”

Even the youngest martial artists seemed to take pride in the good deed. Carson Clark, 7, who was entrusted with ceremonially passing the envelope to Maleno after breaking a studio-high 260 boards at the 2021 break-athon, said it felt good to help those in need.

“It feels really nice that we can help people,” Zack Constantine, 12, chimed in. “The entire town comes together to help people in need.”

According to the Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center’s records, a total of $5,924.50 was raised through sponsorships during the Nov. 20 break-athon. Another $638 came during the Great Falls Festival, with a raffle making $500 and donations accounting for $138. Bags of kindling, put together using boards broken at the break-athon and sold for $5, amassed a total of $750. Collection jars collected another $189 from donors.

After Wednesday’s presentation at the 102 Federal St. business, Johnson took Maleno aside to thank her for providing Greenfield Tae Kwon Do Center with a way to make a difference in the community for 19 years. This was Maleno’s final time organizing Warm the Children, as she is retiring later this month from her job as business manager for the Greenfield Recorder, Athol Daily News and Daily Hampshire Gazette.

“I hope your successors can take that baton as you’ve handled it,” Johnson said.

Reach Julian Mendoza at 413-772-0261, ext. 261 or jmendoza@recorder.com.


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