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Westonites Make Christmas Come Early in Kenya

WESTON, Conn. ? Several Westonites are trying to help secure the future for young women living in rural Africa by holding a fundraiser on Saturday, Nov. 12, at the Cannon Grange.

Westonites Hermione Gluck, Mary Asphar, Tami Campos and Jen Platek are hosting this second annual Khristmas for Kenya in support of The Vanessa Grant Trust, a foundation dedicated to educating girls in Kenya.

Last year, the event raised over $10,000 and this year supporters are hoping to double that figure.

For three generations, Gluck's family has operated Gogar Farm in Kenya’s Rift Valley.

A school was initially built for children of farm employees. The school was taken over by the Kenyan government in 1963. By the 1990s, the school was in horrible condition and Gluck’s aunt, Vanessa Grant, made it her priority to improve the school’s condition. When Grant died, the Vanessa Grant Trust was established in 1998 in her memory.

There are currently four schools under the sponsorship of the Vanessa Grant Trust: a public primary school, a school for children with special needs, a vocational school for teens with special needs and The Vanessa Grant Girls College, an elite secondary boarding school for girls.

The Trust’s motto: “Education Today for Leadership Tomorrow” serves as life-changing encouragement for its students, 65% of whom receive financial support from the Trust. Educational opportunities in Kenya are few and far between for girls, most of whom are forced to drop out of school at an early age to stay home to assist with domestic duties until a suitable marriage can be arranged. It is wholeheartedly believed that educating a girl educates a family, which in turn, educates a community.

For more info about the Vanessa Grant Trust, please visit www.vanessagranttrust.org and for more information about Khristmas For Kenya or to attend the event, please visit www.khristmasforkenya.org .

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