Wednesday, March 4, 2009
CLOTHING DRIVE FOR ROMA CHILDREN IN BULGARIA
Wow, this is some pleasant and unexpected news.
Cheered me up.
From the Tennessee Journalist
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
By Heather Sutton
published: March 03 2009 05:07 PM updated:: March 03 2009 08:02 PM
A popular downtown bar and restaurant will host a clothing drive and fund raiser Friday benefiting Roma children living in Bulgaria.
Sapphire, located at 428 S. Gay St. in Downtown Knxville, will host the event to assist the Roma people, the largest minority population in Europe. Sapphire is asking for donations of new or slightly used winter clothing for children up to age 16, including hats, gloves, sweaters, coats, scarves and shoes. Donations will be accepted anytime between now and March 6.
The event is coordinated by former UT student and Sapphire bartender Stephanie Davis. Davis, 26, said a trip to Bulgaria last September really opened her eyes to the poor living conditions in Roma ghettos.
"I had the opportunity to visit a Roma neighborhood, which was the most devastating thing I've ever seen - no plumbing, no electricity, inadequate shelter, no trash pick up."
Davis decided to step in after receiving emails from two friends serving in the Peace Corps in Bulgaria asking for her help.
"My friends told me that the kids were lacking shoes and coats, so not only were they suffering in freezing temperatures, their lack of clothes was restricting them from attending Bulgarian schools," Davis said. "Donating clothes seems like such a simple and easy thing to do in order to facilitate a child's educational opportunity." Stephanie Davis"Donating clothes seems like such a simple and easy thing to do in order to facilitate a child's educational opportunity."
The donations will be sent to the Peace Corps volunteers, one in Dupnitsa and the other in Pishtogovo. They will each distribute the donations to children and families they work with in those neighborhoods. Monetary donations will be used to offset shipping costs.
The event is open to all ages from 7 until 10 p.m., at which time Sapphire converts to a 21 and up bar. A clothing donation will replace the $10 cover charge.
Posted by Morgan at 10:16 AM