Cash raised for classrooms

Money raised at this year’s Heart and Soul Concert was down significantly from last year, but enough was raised to benefit schoolgirls in Afghanistan.

Money raised at this year’s Heart and Soul Concert was down significantly from last year, but enough was raised to benefit schoolgirls in Afghanistan.

About $4,000 was raised the night of the ninth annual concert for A Better World 100 Classroom Project. The event was hosted by Canadian University College on Friday in Lacombe and featured a variety of local artists.

Just under $6,000 is needed to build one classroom at Charmgar Khana High School in northern Afghanistan, said the project founder Azalea Lehndorff.

More money is usually donated in the week following the event, she added.

Approximately $12,000 was raised during the night of concert last year and $6,000 more was donated in the week that followed.

Lehndorff reasoned that people were probably more inclined to donate last year as the money went towards relief work in earthquake-ravaged Haiti.

“People respond differently when there’s a crisis versus an ongoing project,” she said.

Lehndorff still enthusiastically thanked all of those who attended this year’s event, which CUC staff members Keith and Bernice Leavitt helped organize.

The money will help build one of the 34 classrooms that Lehndorff hopes to see built at Charmgar Khana High School. More than 2,000 girls attend the school that is on the site of an old armoury in Sherberghan, Afghanistan.

“The only classroom they have is riddled with bullet holes,” she said.

Lehndorff will return to Afghanistan at the end of April to open the first 16 classrooms. The project has raised more than $120,000 since launching in early 2010.

The next fundraising project for A Better World 100 Classroom Project is the Freedom Run 5,000 in Lacombe on April 10.

For more information or to register, visit www.freedomrun5000.org.

ptrotter@bprda.wpengine.com