Some local high school students are hoping to raise $1,000 to help flood victims.
This week the Global Issues Club at Rock Bridge High School held Pakistan Awareness Week in light of a July flood in Peshawar, Pakistan. The flood destroyed 400 health facilities, left six million homeless and submerged millions of acres of crop land, according to the club.
The awareness week finished up with Pakistan trivia night on Thursday. About 60 people attended the event, and it was $7 per person. It raised $811.
“I thought the night overall was great success,” club president Omar Taranissi said. “The turnout was better than we expected. It’s nice to know the money’s going to something useful. The goal for tonight was $500, and the goal for the week was $1,000.”
Pakora, biryani and kabob — all traditional Pakistani foods — were available for the crowd, mostly Rock Bridge students, to try. For the not so daring, fried rice, yellow rice and rice with chickpeas were also available.
Syed Arshad Husain, a child psychiatrist and a MU professor emeritus, spoke about his recent visit to the flood site. During his presentation Husain said 17 inches of rain came down in 24 hours in the northern province of Pakistan. There have been about 1,800 deaths and $43 billion in economic development repairs.
“I think sometimes students get dismissed because of their age,” said Nadege Uwase, founder of Global Issues Leadership Development. “Tonight, we’re playing trivia games, but we’re fundraising for a cause,” Global Issues Leadership Development is a nonprofit organization created to promote human rights through after-school programs.
The Global Issues Club at Rock Bridge High School decided to raise money for the flood victims because the club is focusing on aiding victims of natural disasters. Each semester the club — in collaboration with Global Issues Leadership Development — picks a topic, organization and country on which to focus their efforts.
Club members began accepting donations on Monday and held a bake sale at the school on Tuesday. As of Wednesday, the club had raised $580. All of the money will be donated to UNICEF.
Uwase, a Rock Bridge and MU alumna, started Global Issues Leadership Development two years ago. The organization works with the Global Issues Clubs at both Rock Bridge and Hickman high schools and plans to expand to other Missouri public schools in the future.