A Sachem student recently turned her birthday into something special for sick children.

Joyanna Sora, a junior at Sachem High School East in Farmingville, requested guests to donate children's items -- ranging from board games to coloring books -- in lieu of birthday gifts last month in celebration of her sweet 16 party at The Meadow Club in Port Jefferson Station.

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The wide array of toys and games went to the NewYork-Presbyterian Phyllis and David Komansky Center for Children's Health in Manhattan.

"It was enough to fill my grandmother's [Ford] Explorer; I was so amazed by everyone's generosity," said Sora, 16. Of her incentive to help local kids, she said: "I was able to have a really nice party, but some kids don't have a chance to do that."

To select a hospital, Sora said she researched local hospitals to determine which would be a good fit and took a tour of the facility before her party. She then included a letter in her party invitations inviting attendees to donate a gift to one of four age groups: infants, toddlers, adolescents or preteens.

Sora is a member of Sachem East's National Honor Society, student government and leadership club. She also teaches Sunday school to preschoolers at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Lake Ronkonkoma.