Zonta Club back to help those who need it

Staff at The Garden Island newspaper and volunteers from the Zonta Club of Kauai are again teaming up this year, and asking members of the community’s help in making the holidays happier for less-fortunate neighbors through the Zonta/The Garden Island Christmas Fund.

While most people look forward each year to the merriment and cheer of the holiday season, there are far too many residents who have their hands more than full simply trying to make ends meet on a daily basis.

Many are senior citizens living on a fixed incomes who can barely stretch those incomes to take care of their immediate needs, leaving nothing for even simple extras. Single parents, those in families with special needs, and members of families trying to better their lives, all would appreciate a helping hand from those who can afford it.

Every year, leaders of the Zonta Club of Kauai invite representatives of agencies such as Easter Seals, Kauai Economic Opportunity, Inc., the county Offices of Community Assistance Agency on Elderly Affairs, and many others, to submit the stories of clients they feel are most in need of help from members of the community.

Beginning today, Friday, Nov. 25, and continuing through Christmas Eve, Saturday, Dec. 24, these stories will be published daily on the front page of The Garden Island, along with an appeal for monetary donations of any size.

Funds raised are distributed to needy families by Zonta Club members who purchase gift certificates at appropriate businesses to help make their simple dreams come true.

Last year, over $15,000 in monetary and inkind donations was raised through the generosity of island residents and visitors.

These funds made the holiday season brighter for 392 less-fortunate Kaua’i individuals. With your help, The Garden Island and Zonta Club of Kaua’i hope to help even more families this year.

Because of logistical limitations, only monetary donations can be accepted. Gift certificates and used or new items, while appreciated, should not be submitted.

Checks should be written to Zonta Club of Kauai Foundation 501(c)3. Donations are tax-deductible, and should be mailed to Zonta Club of Kauai Foundation, c/o Joy Miura Koerte, P.O. Box 3996, Lihu’e, HI 96766.

Pualani putting her life back together

Pualani is a 32-year-old female with three children, ages 16, 12, and 1. In the past, Pualani has struggled with drugs — that resulted in a criminal conviction and, subsequently, prison time. Since her release over a year ago, Pualani has worked diligently to put her life and her family together again. She has gone back to school, taking classes at Kaua’i Community College, and is working towards an associate’s degree in liberal arts. Ultimately, she would like to help others through her own experiences and formal training.

Pualani was elated when she recently obtained a part-time job. Despite her busy life, she contributes to the community by volunteering to help others stay off drugs. Food items would greatly help her and members of her family.

Couple has limited funds for extras

Betty and her husband live on a very limited budget. She suffers from Alzheimer’s disease, and he, too, has some physical limitations. Their children all live on the Mainland, with minimal contact. Because of their limited budget and their physical limitations, they seldom get to buy anything special for themselves, as all of their income goes for the basic household necessities.

A gift certificate to a department store would be a welcome treat for them.

Kris needs surgery and support

Kris is a 6-month-old little girl who has the prettiest smile. She was born with a medical condition that has affected her vision, and could possibly affect her development, so she is receiving services from professionals at Easter Seals.

She will be having major surgery on O’ahu. There’s a lot of risk involved, so her parents are doing the best they can to not worry. That’s tough, though, when it’s your child, especially a baby. Any help they receive during this difficult time will be much appreciated by members of the family.

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