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 SRU's Institute for Community Organizing Fund Drive for Tsunami Victims 

 

SPOTLIGHT

1/6/2005

Contact: K.E. Schwab  -- 724-738-2199;  e-mail: karl.schwab@sru.edu

SRU’S INSTITUTE FOR COMMUNITY ORGANIZING FUND DRIVE FOR TSUNAMI VICTIMS

           SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – Slippery Rock University’s Institute for Community, Service-Learning and Nonprofit Leadership has launched a campus and community fund drive to help in the worldwide relief efforts to aid victims in the south-east Asian countries hit by December’s tsunami.

          Preliminary reports show all SRU international students, and their immediate family members, from the region are safe and will be returning to campus when spring semester classes begin Monday [Jan. 10]. SRU enrolls 10 students from Sri Lanka and two from India. Early reports from SRU alumni in the region who have contacted the SRU Office of International Initiatives found none directly effected by the tidal wave.

          “We are certainly devastated by the destruction in the region, but very pleased to find nearly all of our students and alumni live inland and were not injured. In addition, some of our students from the region elected to stay in the U.S. over the break, and therefore remained safe,” said Dr. Donald Kerchis, director of SRU’s Office of International Initiatives. “We are certainly among those who will join in the campus and community efforts to help bring aid to those effected by this disaster.” SRU has 180 alumni from the tsunami region.

          Alice Kaiser-Drobney, director of the community service institute at the university, explains while people in the region need every conceivable item, the most immediate needs can best be met through financial support. She says, “There are dozens of very reputable relief organizations and all are indicating that financial support is most needed at this time. In the future, personal care items, construction materials and labor will be needed, but at this time, there are so many immediate needs and costs of shipping are so great that money is the most practical.”

          She says 100 percent of the funds collected in the local drive will be forwarded to Oxfam, an organization she has worked with in the past. “Oxfam is a collection of more than 3,000 partner agencies that have created a confederation of relief efforts that are about empowering the world’s disadvantaged and not just providing western solutions to local issues. A very small portion of money that is donated to Oxfam goes to administrative costs. Because they are an on-going organization functioning in more than 100 countries, they already have the infrastructure to react to natural disasters like the recent tsunami.”

          She explains donations will be accepted under the Slippery Rock University Cares Fund through Jan. 21 and asks those sending checks to make them payable to the Slippery Rock University Foundation/Kids That Care – Tsumani Fund. Checks may be mailed to SRU, Institute for Community, Service-Learning and Nonprofit Leadership, 1 Morrow Way, Slippery Rock, PA 16057. Those contributing $25 or more will receive a donation voucher. 

            Across campus a fund-raiser volunteer will be designated for each building to aid in collecting donations from faculty, staff and students.

    Those with questions should call the institute at 724-738-2273.

 

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