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by ZontaDoris

ICYMI is internet-talk for In Case You Missed It.  R$fTtM is Raising Money for Things that Matter.

We have two fabulous FUNdraisers coming up soon to help women and families here and around the world.

Event#1

Hamburger Mary’s in Clearwater on US 19 is the place to be on September 26 starting at 5:30 PM or so. We Zonta Club members will have dinner there (DIY pay), then we’ll play Drag Queen Bingo–$10 for ten bingo games.

The glamorous hostesses with personalities to match are lots of fun to be with. Our club receives proceeds from the sale of bingo cards and all the money from the big “Z”, made of scratch-off lottery tickets.  We award bottles of wine to the ten bingo game winners. All (this includes MEN) are welcome to come to play.

You see, our Club replenishes its treasury each year to support Zonta International’s service programs around the world and to serve women in our community.

First, ZI (Zonta International). My visits to ZI’s website to learn about our work outside the USA always move me. These programs include the repair of obstetric fistulas in Liberia, cultural change to delay early marriage in Niger, and stopping human trafficking and unsafe migration in Nepal.

If you’re asking yourself, as I did, what an obstetric fistula is, go to the Zonta International website to learn. Or watch this 9-minute video below.

Believe me, you will be horrified and moved by the injuries these women experience because of unattended childbirth. On top of their physical damage, many are ostracized and abandoned by their families and villages.

You will learn how ZI’s support enables the women’s bodies to be repaired, their psyches to be lifted up, and their economic prospects brightened with micro-entrepreneurial training in tailoring, hair dressing, and baking.  These services enable their successful return to their home communities as financially independent entrepreneurs. They can fashion new lives for themselves and families.

ZI’s work in Niger to stop early marriage impresses me as well. Did you know that

Niger has the highest child marriage rate in the world with 77 percent of girls married by age 18 and 30 percent married by age 15. Forty-two percent of adolescent girls give birth before the age of 17. A high proportion of school-aged girls are not in school and 73 percent of adolescent girls, ages 15-19, cannot read or write.

You can see the impact, can’t you, of all these girls saddled with maternal & conjugal responsibilities that they are not ready for? You’ll also understand why I happily contribute to our ZI Foundation to support women and their families around the world because they focus on real-life problems that need resolution.

We are so very lucky to live in relative safety and abundance here in the U.S. Yet, everything isn’t perfect here either. We still have women not realizing their potential because they drop out of school too soon and become mothers too young.  We have women fleeing with their children to escape violence in the home.  And others whose economic dependency is exploited by nasty employers.

We keep our Club’s operating expenses very low to be able to

–award $1,000 scholarships for exemplary public service by young women graduating high school and those studying for business career majors in college

–purchase and fill backpacks with school supplies and lunch boxes for kids in domestic violence programs returning to school

–give boxes of toiletries & desk items to women vets

–host dinner for Ronald MacDonald House families

–honor ground-breaking women leaders in our community with bouquets & recognition on International Women’s Day

–arrange and lead educational events, and

–address other compelling needs in the community.

Money makes the world go round AND our community activities possible.

You gotta help!  Please come and bring your friends to our next fundraiser at Hamburger Mary’s on September 26 (28910 US Hwy 19 N, Clearwater, FL 33761). If you can bring 6-8 people, reserve a table by calling (727) 400-6996.  If it’s only 1-2 of you, come ahead and we’ll pair you with Zontians at other tables.

event#2

How many of you watch Dancing with the Stars?  I bet that many of you do!

We have our own Tampa Bay Dancing with the Stars magical evening on October 1.

It is a black-tie dinner with drinks and talented entertainment.

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Dr. Carole Medvesky, Dancer and Zontian Extraordinaire

You will see our favorite dentist and dedicated Zontian–Dr. Carole Medvesky–dancing!  You can vote now (each vote costs $1) on the Dancing with the Stars  Tampa Bay website to help Dr. Carole raise money for nonprofit beneficiaries.

We also have seats available at the “Zonta Table” at $100 each.  Please join us to raise money for the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay, Pinellas Safe Harbor, and other valuable services in the community.  And have a memorable evening full of good food and starry sights.

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Featured photo of origami money butterfly from jordandemuth @Pixabay.

The views expressed in this blog post are mine and may not reflect the stance of the Zonta Club of Pinellas County or Zonta International. — Doris Reeves-Lipscomb