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A mountain of support

As a family, we would like to thank our Aspen community of friends for their generous support of the 2004 Kilimanjaro Climb for Save the Children. Our son, Derek, with 13 other team members, reached the summit of Kilimanjaro on March 12. This climb followed a five-day visit to Malawi and the village schools program that is the focus of this fund-raising climb.

Save the Children supports the building of local schools and the training of teachers from within the villages. These schools currently serve 330,000 Malawi children, with a dropout rate of only 3 percent. The schools also serve as an important venue for HIV/AIDs education.

We are moved by the extent of support a community can provide. Derek’s individual fund-raising campaign for Save the Children has raised $11,500 at this time. Since Derek was responsible for his own expenses, the entire amount will go to Save the Children and the Malawi project. The climbing team is responsible for a contribution of over $130,000 to this project.

As quoted from the Save the Children Web site, “Derek’s been overwhelmed by the response his participation on the Climb for Children has attracted from his hometown of Aspen, Colorado. There, people ranging from his teachers to children at the Aspen Chapel who designed and sold Valentine’s cards have made gifts to Save the Children in his name. ‘I’m just incredibly, incredibly thankful and hope that they know their support is going to help make a direct impact for children.’

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A diary of the trip and details about the village schools program in Malawi can be found at http://www.savethechildren.org. We are indeed grateful to live in this community that is sensitive to the needs of our larger world.

Tom and Donna Ward

Aspen


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