WXXI AM News

Local Fundraiser for Italy Earthquake Relief

Aug 24, 2016

Italian American Community Center in Gates
Credit Alex Crichton

Rochester's Italian American Community Center is raising funds to help earthquake victims in Central Italy.

The Center hosted a luncheon Wednesday with a raffle to raise money for earthquake relief.

Banquet manager Phyllis Glover says they also plan a pasta fundraiser.

"That region is noted for a specific pasta sauce and what we're going to do is authenticate it, and hold a fundraiser in their honor and hopefully help many of the victims and families in that area," she said.

Glover says many members of the center have friends and family in the affected region.

IACC members buy raffle tickets for earthquake relief efforts

That includes Mary Masa, who was born in Italy and came to this country at the age of 12.

She says she watched scenes of the devastation on TV.

"They're all shook up, and all these people are taken away in helicopters. The hospitals are full, and it is so shocking. I feel bad about it," she said.

Masa says she contacted family back home and everyone is fine.

Law clerk Stacy Romeo is another member of the Italian American Community Center.

She says the best way to help is by making a monetary donation.

"It's so new but we definitely want to reach out to that community, and I think money is the way that we can help them the most, at this point," she said.

Romeo says she has family in the neighboring region that was hit by an earthquake in 2009, so she understands the pain and turmoil that those communities are going through.