Newsday: Grant for Respite Home

After Bob Policastro’s 13-month-old daughter, Angela, died more than a decade ago from brain-damage, he decided to devote his life to helping medically frail children.

Now Policastro, the founder of Angela’s House in East Moriches, the only house on Long Island that cares for brain-damaged children 24 hours a day, will be able to further his mission. He was given a $100,000 grant from the UPS Foundation Friday to build a respite home.

The home will be a place where parents could drop off their brain-damaged children for a limited time while at the movies or on vacation. Otherwise, “the mothers become captive and do not get a break,” Policastro said.

He is planning to build the home, which will have about seven beds and would be able to serve 100 people a year, near his Hauppauge residence.

“This gets us to a point where a needed service becomes a reality,” Policastro said, after accepting the check.

After getting $500,000 from the state, Angela’s House, a home for seven children, became a reality two years ago. Policastro, 42, was approved for another $500,000 last year by the state to build a second Angela’s House in Smithtown.

The UPS Foundation has donated nearly $3 million nationally to nonprofit agencies this year. Angela’s House was chosen from many applicants around the Northeast, about 100 on Long Island.

By Jerome Burdi
Newsday (November 9, 2002)