January 26, 2011

Benefit will help fund students’ New Orleans trip

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A magical evening is going to help a group of Southern Illinois University Carbondale students work some special magic with children in New Orleans.

Magician David Ranalli will perform a magic show at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 28, at the Longbranch Coffee House, located at 100 E. Jackson Street on the Carbondale Square. There is a $3 cover charge and all of the proceeds from the benefit show will go to directly to the educ8kdz New Orleans fund.

A registered student organization at SIUC, educ8kdz is a group of students from the College of Education and Human Services dedicated to, just as the name says, educating kids. The group will make its third trip to New Orleans April 9-15. In Louisiana, they will be helping children and teachers who continue to struggle in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

During previous trips, the students have painted, helped with cleanup, assembled a preschool classroom, catalogued library books, and even helped childcare providers with some ideas and training about teaching strategies.

The SIUC students hold a variety of fundraisers each year to raise the money they need to take the trip, according to Christina C. McIntyre, assistant professor of curriculum and instruction and faculty adviser for edu8kdz. She said the benefit magic show is a much-appreciated way to have a fun evening kicking off the new semester and help raise funds for the upcoming trip.

To find out more about educ8kdz or to donate toward the April trip to help kids in the New Orleans area, contact McIntyre at 618/453-4245 or via e-mail at cherimc@siu.edu.