Students Help With Little Dresses for Africa

5:00 PM, Apr 22, 2011   |    comments
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  • Students at Brighten Academy collected more than 450 pounds of pillowcases to be turned into dresses for children in Africa.
  • Students at Brighten Academy collected more than 450 pounds of pillowcases to be turned into dresses for children in Africa.
    

DOUGLASVILLE - At Brighten Academy teachers focus on academics, of course, but the Douglas County charter school has a mission to do more.

It's working to build character.

"I wanted to teach my class how one person could make a difference," said teacher, Carrie Sneed.

They decided to follow in the steps of a Detroit woman name Rachel O'Neill who visited Africa and returned to help African children get clothing.

"She saw that there were these little girls running around in men's t-shirts. So she came up with Little Dresses for Africa," said Miya Howard, a sixth grader.

O'Neill recruits volunteers to sew the pillowcases into dresses and shorts.

Brighten Academy sixth graders spent a month collecting pillowcases, and in the end, amassed a whopping 450 pounds or 2,000 pillow cases - both new and old.

They became creative. One family went to Wellstar Hospital Douglas General Hospitalin Douglasville.

"There are a lot of used pillowcases that they clean that they don't need any more. So they let us have five garbage full so we can take them to the school," said sixth grader, Alan Michael Dooley.

Then, another dad got Delta Airlines to help ship 17 boxes to Detroit.

"Now my students have learned how one person can make a difference. They made a Chipper Jones move and hit it out of the park (with the amount they collected)," said Sneed.

11Alive couldn't't let them do it alone and donated several sets of pillowcases to the cause, as part of our 11Alive Random Acts of Kindness. As usual, with each random act, we contribute to the 11Alive "Add to the Chain"initiative as part of Rachel's Challenge.

Our mission is to set a record for the largest chain link of Kindness and Compassion --- each link representing a kind deed.

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