Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Coming Together for Nepal

One thing I admire about our school here is the way it comes together for those in need. Right after Nepal suffered its first earthquake in late April, everyone at our school -- teachers, parents, staff, and students from pre-K to grade 12 -- has pulled together all the resources, and raised money and taken donations for the people of Nepal.

Currently, there are five different fundraisers going on at school. There's a used book sale, a sale of customized DIY pencil cases and key chains, and a water bottle sale. There also is a spaghetti dinner sale, which sells spaghetti dinners (with various different sauces) for 100 baht (~$3) each. People also can donate ingredients to make the spaghetti dinners, volunteer to make the dinners, or sponsor/pay for dinners for needy families in our area, The Parent Association also is selling t-shirts designed by a student. These t-shirts have been selling like hot cakes and the group already is on its third or fourth order.

Then there's a group of students, who call themselves the New Generation Philanthropists, who put together a CD/DVD set of various piano concert performances of one its members. This member is a student of my husband's who, at only 14 years old, already plays the piano like a professional, and who has entered and won several international competitions. Not only is he a talented piano player, but he also is a nice, modest person and a high achiever academically. On the DVD is one of his performances with a music school orchestra when he was just ten years old. He was phenomenal.

We've tried to participate in the fundraisers and support these efforts to help Nepal. We've sponsored spaghetti dinners for a few needy families, donated a couple of bags of clothes, purchased my husband's student's CD/DVD, and purchased a t-shirt. The rest of the school, it seems, has been similarly or even more supportive. Another student, who also is an amazing musician at just 11 or 12, donated the money he won at a piano competition (our school is full of very talented musicians -- one middle-school student already has performed at Carnegie Hall while still in elementary school). Early last week, about two weeks since these fundraisers were started, the entire school had already raised over $10,000 to help Nepal. There is to be another announcement this or next week of the total amount raised from the fundraisers. I wouldn't be surprised if the total were over $20,000, the way everyone has pitched in. It's heartening to see the community coming together to help.

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