On April 22nd, 2013 I’ll turn 22 (two days after this little boy turns 19). I will celebrate with dinner and drinks in the company of my best friends and I’ll go back to my apartment, put my pajamas on and sleep in my own bed.

On April 22nd, 2013 over 21,000 children in NYC alone will spend the night in a municipal shelter, possibly in the jeans they wore that day, and sleep in a bed that isn’t their own.

However, thanks to the work of the Pajama Program, millions of children across the country living in shelters, group homes and temporary housing are receiving a warm pair of pajamas to wear to bed and a book to read…things that I don’t need.

Despite the popularity of Taylor Swift’s hit single, around February I started to think that 22 would be a fairly boring birthday, especially after one as momentous as 21. Don’t get me wrong - I’m sure the entire year will be great, with the whole “graduating and entering the real world” thing - it’s just the day that I don’t really need. When I saw a friend of mine dedicate her birthday to charity:water, I was inspired to do something similar, but with an organization that worked with underprivileged youth in the United States. After searching the Internet for a couple of hours, I came across the Pajama Program and it seemed like a perfect fit, especially since pajamas and books are two of my favorite things. I went on to create a fundraising page for my birthday and slowly started to spread it around online. Now with the big day exactly 2 weeks away, I’d like this page and this cause to spread a little quicker.

My goal is to raise $222 (get it?) and I need your help. A gift of just $10 gives a pair of pajamas and a book to a child in need somewhere in the United States. Please help me celebrate the 1 year anniversary of my 21st birthday with a gift to the Pajama Program and share this post with those who care as much I do. Together, we can help over 20 children this month! 

sydney and jordan
04/19/2013 4:40pm

Great idea, happy birthday and we are happy to help

04/19/2013 4:45pm


05/03/2013 8:57am

Hi Shayna and thank you so much for helping Pajama Program! I see you attend Ithaca college - do you live in Upstate NY? We have been working overtime on our new Reading Center which we will open with a ribbon cutting June 5th...we can't wait to have more children come here to read and receive new pajamas!

05/03/2013 9:24am

Hi Genevieve,

I live in Upstate NY when I'm in school, but after graduating I'll be going back home to the Hudson Valley. I'd love to come to the ribbon cutting for the new center! Could you email me more details? shayna.dunitz@gmail.com

Thank you for all you do!


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