HAMPSTEAD – When 17-year-old Michael Castoro wanted to improve the sound equipment at Topsail High School’s drama and music department, The Hampstead Women’s Club was ready with a $1,000 donation to assist him.

“Last year the drama department performed ‘Grease,’” said Castoro. “The sound equipment kept cutting out and you couldn’t hear the students.”

Castoro, a senior at Topsail High School, is not involved in the dramas, but he said he would never forget how upset the student-actors were about the sound quality.

“I felt so bad for them,” he said. “They had worked so hard on the show, and all three performances were sold out, but the sound was so bad.”

“We received his letter about the need for sound equipment,” said Patricia Truscello, president of the Hampstead Women’s Club. “We are thrilled to make this donation to the music and drama department.”

Truscello said the donation will go toward the purchase of microphones, wireless headsets, cables and stands to be used in events which showcase talent at Topsail High School.

“Our mission is to give back to the community and our schools. It’s what we are all about,” said Truscello.

“I am extremely grateful for this donation,” said Castoro. “This donation from the Hampstead Women’s Club is much more than I ever expected.”

He said the Club’s unified purpose of giving back to the community is inspiring.

Castoro, the son of Toni and John Castoro, hopes to raise $5,000 through sponsorships and a raffle.

“The raffle will take place Oct. 24,” said Toni Castoro. “Tickets are on sale now through the drama department and drama students. There will be a lot of prizes.”

The raffle grand prize is a Tempur-Pedic mattress from Hampstead Furniture. Tickets are $5 each.

The Hampstead Women’s Club has donated more than $450,000 to community organizations since 2001. The organization is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization. It owns the Hampstead Community Building, which is available for rental. Its primary funding source is the Hampstead Thrift Shop, located at 14435 US Hwy 17. Store hours are Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., closed Wednesdays and Sundays. For more information about the club or the thrift store call 910-270-9510. For rental of the community building call 910-270-9549. Visit online at www.hampsteadwomensclub.org and on Facebook.