With the school year winding down and summer almost here, it would be easy for any area high school student to spend his or her time simply counting down the days to the start of summer fun. But for one group of students at Middleton High School, there is no time like the present to start a new project, aimed at helping those in need halfway around the world.
For the past three weeks, this group of students have been collecting used sports equipment for children in the country of Liberia, all in the name of helping the youth of this nation, which is recovering from a 15-year civil war, learn how to see each other as teammates rather than enemies.
The inspiration for the project — titled Sports For Africa and part of a burgeoning non-profit organization called Project Liberia — came from 16-year-old Laytee Norkeh, whose mother and father are Liberian nationals. As Norkeh and her friends listened to heartbreaking stories of the great need that exists across the small West African country, they couldn’t help but see an opportunity to get involved.
“We felt a strong need to take matters into our own hands and help those who are so helpless,” Norkeh says. “It takes so little to make such a big difference in the lives of these people. We want to help them and give them hope of a better future.”
Norkeh, along with Eli Rosen, Carli Kopatz, Lexie Jordee, Sam Delabarre, Ashley Guse, Campbell White, David Ripp, Alex Koritzinsky, and John Zimmerman have been working to collect used sports equipment at their school and other local businesses. The collection runs from May 28 – June 6th. Laytee has created a video which will be shown to the student body beginning May 28th.
About Project Liberia:
Project Liberia is a collection of individual programs designed to meet some of the most pressing needs for a nation recovering from a devastating civil war. Each venture — from building a community center, developing a micro-loan system and bringing sports equipment to children in villages and orphanages — has been developed to enhance the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual fiber of the people of Liberia. 501(c)(3) status pending.
For more information, please contact Bulleh Bablitch at (608) 577-6711 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liberia via the CIA’s World Factbook.