Sands Confidential

Sands Cares Hero of the Year: Donato Mercuri

In honor of the 2nd annual Sheldon G. and Dr. Miriam Adelson Citizenship Award, presented by Sands Cares, we are featuring our 12 Sands Cares Heroes, finalists for the Adelson Citizenship Award.  Las Vegas Sands established the award to recognize Team Members across all of our regions who have demonstrated a dedication to giving back to local communities and important causes.  The award was created to honor the Adelson family’s long-term commitment to philanthropy and the legacy of giving that they have instilled in the company.  The winner will be announced Wednesday, April 25. 

Here are a few words from Donato Mercuri of Sands Bethlehem on what Sands Cares and volunteering means to him:

This past year, I have focused my efforts on the Victory House, serving dinner to the homeless veterans who live there.  I have also lent my time to Donegan Elementary School, where I have served breakfast and dinner to the students and their families during special events.  I was also a volunteer at Musikfest, where I was an usher, ticket taker and server on the Sands Stage.  My first volunteer experience through Sands Cares was at the Family Open House, a fun night at Donegan Elementary School where we served over 500 pizzas to the students. 

Sands Cares supports our community in so many ways, whether we’re supporting our local elementary schools and their enrichment programs or conducting a clothing drive to help the needy.  We also have food drives to keep our local food pantry full and our annual Southside Clean Up where we clean up the streets in our neighborhood to ensure it is clean and safe for everyone in the community.  It’s events like these that make it so important to lend our time through Sands Cares volunteer events.  Through all of these programs, we are able to give back to our community in meaningful ways.  The Adelson’s are a true inspiration.  They care enough to want to help our communities. 

My favorite volunteer opportunity is our annual support of the Donegan Elementary School Family Open House-Fun Night.  It’s a great night where families come and enjoy some pizza, play educational games and see the school, and visit with their child’s teacher.  I have so much fun serving pizza!  I get to talk to the parents at all the events and they’re so appreciative for our support and dedication to the school and activities.  From kindergarten to 5th grade, the parents start to even know our names.  They think it’s a great thing that we’re there.

We encourage our Team Members to give back because it makes such a difference wherever Sands has a footprint in our community.  Everyone should just do it – just volunteer, it’s fun and satisfying.  Sands Cares is a special way to help me get into volunteering, it’s fun and it makes me feel like I’m helping to make a small difference.