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Children raising money for India volunteer trip; auction Oct. 20
KINGSTON — Paula Piperata and her daughter, Mai Ly, 14, and son Gianni, 12, are raising money so they can go to the Himalayas to work with Tibetan refugee children in November.
During their trip, they will spend a week learning Hindi and culture, and then will fly to McLeod Ganj in Dharamshala to teach children English and personal hygiene.
Amid their volunteer work, they’ll keep up with their school studies; Gianni, a seventh-grader at Kingston Middle School, will continue work on his AGATE project, interviewing Tibetan refugees and researching in their museums and libraries.
An auction to help fund the trip is scheduled Saturday, Oct. 20, 6-9 p.m., at The Dance Within Studio on Front Street in Poulsbo. There will be live entertainment — belly dancers — and appetizers.
Piperata, a para-educator at Gordon Elementary School, had intended to use her salary to pay for the trip, but because of budget cuts her hours were cut to three hours a day. “We have been planning this trip for almost a year now and have already made the commitment to go,” she emailed. “With my loss of hours, we had to get creative on how to raise money for the remaining part of our trip.”
Why India? Mai Ly and Gianni have volunteered in Kitsap County since 2007, raising more than $2,000 for PAWS of Bainbridge Island, Second Chance Ranch, Kitsap Humane Society and R.E.D.
“Now that my children are older, we are ready to take it to the next step and participate in a volunteer program,” Piperata emailed. “The reason why we chose to volunteer internationally is because it will also expose the kids to a new culture. I feel that this in turn will make them more understanding, tolerant and accepting of other cultures as they get older. They will realize that just because we might look different, eat different food, speak a different language, wear different clothes and have different beliefs, we are still all the same underneath. I think this will help them become more compassionate adults.”
According to their mother, Mai Ly and Gianni are “very passionate kids with big hearts.” They have maintained a high GPA throughout middle school and made the Honor Roll both semesters last year.
To assist in the fundraising, contact Piperata at (360) 286-9590 or firstname.lastname@example.org.