Education


Local Effort Raises Funds For A Well In Liberia

Published: July 05, 2018 at 12:00 am

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Two Reed Intermediate School clusters, Petrice DiVanno and Matt Dalton's cluster and Amanda Eide and John Sicbaldi's cluster, gather together on June 26 to celebrate raising money for a well in Liberia. Pictured with the students are paraeducator…
Two Reed Intermediate School clusters, Petrice DiVanno and Matt Dalton's cluster and Amanda Eide and John Sicbaldi's cluster, gather together on June 26 to celebrate raising money for a well in Liberia. Pictured with the students are paraeducator Christina Vavala, seated left, and standing in the back row are Mr Sicbaldi, Mr Dalton, Ms DiVanno, paraeducator Isabella Sousa, and Ms Eide. The students hold a sign that reads, "Everyone deserves clean water." (Bee Photo, Hallabeck)
Newtown Middle School Project Challenge students, from left, Kirtana Kunzweiler, Ava Hanson, Emily Jackson, and Anna Ochs pose together for a photo. The students held a bake sale over the weekend of April 1 to raise money to build a well in Liberia.
Newtown Middle School Project Challenge students, from left, Kirtana Kunzweiler, Ava Hanson, Emily Jackson, and Anna Ochs pose together for a photo. The students held a bake sale over the weekend of April 1 to raise money to build a well in Liberia.
Reed Intermediate School sixth grade students in Petrice DiVanno and Matt Dalton's cluster and in Amanda Eide and John Sicbaldi's cluster gathered on the last day of the school year, June 26, to celebrate raising more than $3,200 to help fund building a well in Liberia.

Thanks to the combined efforts of the two clusters, two other local student groups, and the Newtown Rotary Club, a well will be built in Zubah Town in Liberia.

Students in the two clusters worked on June 19 to raise money for the well project through a Kindness Carts event. Students worked individually or in small groups to create the Kindness Carts. The project was based on the sixth grade curriculum. It integrated lessons on math, profits and loss, cultures, traditions, and water borne diseases, along with other aspects of the curriculum, according to Ms DiVanno.

According to Newtown Middle School Project Challenge teacher Valerie Pagano-Hepburn, her students and Newtown High School students in Ben's Lighthouse's Youth Council also raised money to support building the well. Student members of the Youth Council and Project Challenge spoke at a Newtown Rotary Club meeting on April 23, when the group sought and earned the club's monetary support of the project. Project Challenge students also held a bake sale the weekend of April 1 to raise funds for the effort.

With the Ben's Lighthouse students and Project Challenge students raising $2,000, Ms DiVanno said the Reed students had hoped to raise $2,500 through the Kindness Carts project. The students were excited on June 26 with the news that they had exceeded their goal.

According to Reed fifth grade teacher Karen King, who helped connect the fundraising efforts with Liberia, all of the money from the local efforts will go to providing clean drinking water in Zubah Town.

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Newtown Cultural Arts Commission is presenting or coordinating on six weeks of special events. Which event are you looking forward to the most? (Visit our Features page for a full story with details about all of these events.)

“In The Bag” exhibition, on view to September 28
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The Lords of 52nd Street concert, September 14
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Newtown Arts Festival weekend, September 15-16
50% (1 vote)
“An Evening of the Arts,” September 15
50% (1 vote)
“The Fox on the Fairway” production by Town Players of Newtown, weekends September 21-October 13
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“The Main Street Replica Project,” launching September 25
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Someday Cinema Series screenings of “The Blues Brothers,” September 30
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Photography display “In Our Rearview Mirror” by Marleen Cafarelli, et al, October 1-30
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“Love, Laughter, and Rhubarb” with Tinky Weisblat, October 3
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Newtown Day, October 6
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The 3rd Annual Newtown-Sandy Hook Restaurant Week, October 8-14
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Basket weaving workshop with Tina Puckett, October 13
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“Courageous Conversations in A Complex World,” October 17
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Live at ETH: David Wax Museum concert, October 19
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The 2nd Annual Fall Carnival at Fairfield Hills, October 19-21
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Connecticut Author’s Reading Series, October 21
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Natalie’s Open Mic, October 21
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“The Wordsmiths,” October 24
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Pianist Konstanza Chernov, October 28
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Someday Cinema Series double feature screenings of “Bride of Frankenstein” and “The Beast with Five Fingers,” October 29
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Total votes: 2