Feel Good Friday: NJ cheer squad, one-of-a-kind face masks and more

Posted at 6:32 PM, May 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-01 18:59:49-04

With high school sports on hold, you would think a cheerleading squad from Cedar Grove, New Jersey would have an open schedule.

It’s far from the case.

Alessia Velasquez, Sofia Codaro, Ava Cassilli and McKenzie Jennings are keeping busy with the launch of Project Cheer Up.

The teens send “cheer grams” and ride around town bringing cheer to those who need it, like a recent cancer survivor coming home from the hospital.

“We decided to use our skills and what we know best which is cheerleading to make other people feel better,” Velasquez told PIX11. “So they kind of have a distraction.”

Siobhan Nestor is also putting her skills to good use.

A draper for the Metropolitan Opera who — like many in her industry — are currently sidelined, is creating one-of-a-kind face masks made of 100% cotton.

She donates the much-needed protection to essential and front-line workers in Jersey City.

“For so many of us, as long as we have the materials we’re gonna keep going,” Nestor said. “As long as there is a need for it, we’re going to keep going.”

It’s also been another week of notable recoveries.

From a nurse who treated the first COVID-19 patients at St. Mary’s General Hospital in Passaic to Teaneck Police Sgt. Robert Harvey, who recovered after a month-long battle with coronavirus.

Finally, Adele Ambrose who for 40 years cooked Thanksgiving dinner for troopers at the Hampton Bays-Riverhead barracks, felt the love back from those first responders.

A parade of emergency vehicles outside her window on her 91st birthday brought tears to her — and just about everyone’s — eyes.

If you know of a feel-good story in your neighborhood that needs a spotlight we want to hear about it. Send a tweet to @AndrewRamosTV.

To learn more about Project Cheer Up, connect on Facebook and Instagram at @projectcheerup2020. To request a "Cheer gram," send an email to

To contact Siobhan Nestor to donate fabric or buy a mask, visit her Instagram page at @nysiobhan. You can also visit her Etsy page: