Lessons Learned Outside the Classroom

Angela Vacca, 7, of Newington is one of nearly 55 million students nationwide now expected to continue their education at home while schools are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Discovering new ways to learn at home and not being with friends, family and teachers has been a hard adjustment for all. For young children who don’t understand what is happening in the world today, it can be an especially scary time.

Angela Vacca with her UConn Health Donation bag (Photo Credit: The Flash Lady Photography)

Angela’s mother, Kristin Vacca is teaching her a lesson far beyond the class room: giving back and helping others in the hardest of times, no matter the amount, makes a difference.

“As a small business that is closed, really the most important thing right now is staying busy and helping others,” says Kristin Vacca, owner The Flash Lady Photography in Newington.

Vacca saw the need for personal protective equipment (PPE) and jumped into action. She reached out to the community using local social media pages to collect supplies that she could distribute to local first responders and area hospitals.

She received N-95 masks, homemade masks, hand sanitizer and gloves from area businesses and individuals. Angela decorated bags for each donated by a local restaurant.
“Once we put it all together we were so proud of our ‘little’ supply drive. Even a few determined people can make a big difference.” “I’m so proud of Angela”

Vacca has strong ties to UConn Health and it was important to her to make sure the staff had what they needed. She and her brothers made history in 1984 as the state’s first surviving quadruplets delivered by Dr. Winston Campbell at UConn Health.

“They became a model for multiple births,” says Campbell.

Vacca and her brothers all went to the University of Connecticut where she and her husband are both alumni. When she became pregnant with Angela she came back to UConn Health and Dr. Campbell to deliver her.

The most important lesson was teaching Angela that even one person can make a big difference.  The staff at UConn Health are thankful for the donation from the Vaccas.

The Vaccas also provided bags of supplies to the Newington Police Department, Newington EMS and Hartford Hospital.

UConn Health is teaming up with the UConn Foundation to help address the critical shortage of medical supplies during the COVID-19 outbreak, including personal protective equipment (PPE).

This is an unprecedented time, and a community effort is needed to meet the immediate needs of our frontline healthcare staff as they care for patients.

On behalf of our doctors, nurses, and staff, thank you for standing with UConn Health.