Local Woman Kick-Starts Effort to Get a Goat for Haitians

This year for their annual Vacation Bible School mission project, Most Holy Redeemer Parish chose to raise money to buy a family in Haiti a goat. Help them reach their $150 goal.

After Arlene Astrowski's son returned home from a Haiti mission trip and a USA Weekend article about donating to relief efforts after the 2010 earthquake came across her desk, she knew she had to be involved.

The resident has worked as director of religious education for in Evergreen Park for 18 years. This year marks the 10th year the church has participated in Vacation Bible School, and to add more meaning, Astrowski attaches a special mission project.

For the 2012 project, the parish will raise $150 to sponsor a goat for a family living in Haiti through Norwich, Conn.-based Haitian Health Foundation.

"My son got home from his mission trip and described the devastation. At the same time, I saw the article," said Astrowski. "I knew then that that was our project." Astrowski's son is a Lutheran minister who went to Haiti to help relief efforts, and teach Greek and ministry.

A goat is invaluable to a family living in Haiti. One goat will help provide milk and cheese Astrowski said, both sustainable necessities to live.

Vacation Bible School at Most Holy Redeemer will be June 18 to 22. According to Astrowski, the church typically sees about 125 kids come to Vacation Bible School with about 45 volunteers. She will ask each to donate $1 to help reach their goal to sponsor one goat.

In recent years, Most Holy Redeemer's Vacation Bible School mission projects have raised money for the Parish's youth group to visit Harlan, Ky; held a school supplies donation drive for ; and raised money to help save dolphins after a 2011 oil spill in Florida.

"This year the Vacation Bible School theme is 'Everything is possible with God,'" Astrowski said. "It's a great way to mark our 10th year!"

If you'd like to donate to help Most Holy Redeemer meet or surpass their $150 goal, contact Arlene Astrowski at aastrowski@mostholyredeemer.org or at 708-425-5354.

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