Bell Atlantic gave a grant to Westminster Choir

College of Rider University to install a modern communications infrastructure

suitable for a voice, video, and data network. Among the other philanthropic

focuses announced by Peter J. Ventimiglia, vice president of external affairs, are McCarter Theater, George Street Theater, and a special grant to Rutgers University Mega Center to create, in New Brunswick, "the most comprehensive dsitance learning center in the state," including a full-motion, fiber-optic network.

Rochelle Horst, manager of the Lawrenceville branch of Smith Barney, and Nick Ventura, vice president of the Simkus & Ventura Group at Smith Barney, presented a $10,000 check to the Union Industrial Home for Children. The money was raised by a Wellness Breakfast and a dinner honoring Marian Wright Edelman, founder of the Children’s Defense Fund.

Princeton Internet Group donated its services to create the web stie for Eden Dreams’ black tie gala, http://www.EdenDreams.org, complete with links to the web sites of major sponsors, such as CoreStates Bank. This gala is particularly suited to web site

promotion because clues for the annual puzzle "Dream Search" can be distributed on it. The donation included design, development, and initial hosting.

Michael R. Bloomberg of Bloomberg LP has donated $5 million to the Institute for Advanced Study, to be used to help connect two buildings housing the School of Natural Sciences.

The Old Bay Restaurant gave $2,000 to the Elijah’s Promise soup kitchen. The money was the result of the New Brunswick restaurant and blues nightclub’s annual benefit — 100 percent of the door was contributed. The Old Bay raised $6,300 in 1997, all of it donated to charities.

Rock Brook received $50,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to support construction of a new building for students, staff, and families. The organization provides programming for children from age 3 to age 9 in central New Jersey with learning and communication problems. The $50,000 grant will be added to the $300,000 already reasied. Based at 50 College Road, RWJF is the nation’s largest philanthropy devoted to health and health care, and in 25 years has made more than $2 billion in grants.

Volunteers Needed

Parents Anonymous is seeking volunteers to staff its 24-hour Parents Stressline, for parents who are stressed, isolated, and in need of a caring ear. The organization has a call diversion system, so volunteers can work from home. The six-week training program, begins Tuesday, February 10, or Thursday, February 18 (a condensed four-session program starts on Saturday, March 21). After completion, volunteers can give as little as four hours per week. Call 609-243-9779.

Money Spent

Peter C. Carey, communications director of the American Heart Association, says that 45 research projects totaling more than $1.1 million are being funded by the New Jersey chapter. Grants have been made to eight projects at Princeton University, 22 projects at UMDNJ Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, and a dozen others at a handful of other institutions. "Close to 30,000 people in New Jersey die each year from heart disease and stroke," says Carey.

Tax Help

Rider University student volunteers will be stationed at Quakerbridge Mall to provide tax assistance to individuals who cannot afford professional help. In groups of four to six, the students will be at the mall between Monday, February 9, and Saturday, March 7. Th hours are 1 to 4 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays. Student tax volunteers will be stationed in the main lobby of the Rider Student Center from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. For more information, call 609-896-5192.

The American Association of Retired Persons is seeking volunteers to help with its Tax-Aide program, started in 1968, that gives personal one-on-one assistance to those who need help filling out federal and state tax forms. Tax-Aide volunteers should be good with numbers as well as dependable and accurate, and are asked to commit at least four hours per week from February 3 through April 15. Call 609-655-4358.

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