On Sunday, April 7, West Chester University hosted a fundraiser on campus for Aid to South Africa.
Aid to South Africa is an organization that raises money for men, women, and children suffering from HIV/AIDS and hunger. Promoting awareness of these issues within WCU and the local community is main part of their mission. To raise funds, the organization hosts an annual community fair, and 2013 was the 8th annual fair.
According to Nicholle Mills, the public relations chair for ASA, the organization encouraged West Chester students and local community members to attend and help raise funds for this cause. “Seeing local kids and parents, side by side with university students, supporting South Africa was amazing. The ASA fair does/did a fantastic job of reminding us that we are all connected to each other, locally and globally,” said Mills.
The funds raised each year goes to four beneficiaries: H.E.L.P. Ministries Soup Kitchen, serving 6,000 bowls of soup daily to nine primary schools, Sparrow Village, the first AIDS village in the world, Nkosi’s Haven, a family refuge for AIDS orphans as well as infected children with their mothers, and Mosaic, a self-sustainable orphan-care facility, according to Nicholle Mills.
Helping others means a lot to this organization, especially Mills. “For me, helping others means giving a piece of yourself – your time, your money, your talents-in order to make the life of someone else better than it was before. By doing this, we are able to grow in ways that would be impossible otherwise,” said Mills.
Last year, the organization raised over $14,000 from the fundraiser and this year raised over $13,000, with the help of over 105 volunteers.
The event took place in the Hollinger Field House from 12-4 p.m. The WCUR DJed outside of the field house with a kids area, including a moon bounce, a pedestal joust, tye-dye and more. Children’s choirs, local bands, and dance companies also performed.
There was also a walking relay and soccer tournament that occurred throughout the day. Some of the walking teams included The Miss West Chester University Team, Pharmaceutical Product Development Club Team, Glass Family Team, Miriello Family Team, WC Sunrise Rotary Team, Stinson Family Team, Hopewell United Methodist Church Team, and the Schwabenland Family Team. The soccer teams included the Unicorns,
Yolo (winners), and the
“The event was a great success. We surpassed our goal by over $1,000. We added more vendors this year, many of whom sold out of their products. We also added more children’s entertainment, which increased the number of families coming to ASA. The leadership team, volunteers, and attendees all had a wonderful time enjoying the beautiful April weather, while supporting an even greater cause,” said Mills.
Julie Singer is a first year student majoring in special education and middle grades preparation with a minor in reading. She can be reached at JS781397@wcupa.edu.