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The Abby Fund Supports METCO

by Danielle Laura

What is so striking about the death of our 2006 high school graduate, Abdirauf Abdullahi, is that he successfully completed high school, he received a full scholarship to college, and two months before attending his first semester, he was shot and killed in a case of mistaken identity and urban violence.

“Abby was peace-loving, and a quiet leader,” explained Kimberly Bovell, the CC METCO director in office at the time of Abby’s death. I visited Ms. Bovell in the Fall of 2008 with my news of a grant from New York University to begin a scholarship fund in Abdirauf’s name. Soon after meeting with Ms. Bovell and enlisting the help of two CC METCO alumi, Charisse Gilmer, and Cherisa Hernandez, `The Abby Fund’ was born.

The Abby Fund aims to raise over $20,000 to establish an endowment with the Concord Carlisle Scholarship Fund in Abdirauf Abdullahi’s name. This endowment will ensure the longevity of this scholarship fund dedicated solely to CC METCO students, while enabling The Abby Fund’s board to focus on goals outside of fundraising and scholarship allotment.

The additional goals of The Abby Fund are:

  1. to welcome METCO students into our community

  2. to encourage METCO students’ higher education

  3. to bring multi-cultural performances to the high school

  4. to engage current METCO students in the application and fundraising process

Last year’s fundraising campaign and benefit performance raised $5,333, including the founding grant from NYU. We hosted African drumming and dance from youth and adults in our community, modern dance from Boston’s Rainbow Tribe, and Brazilian music and dance from Cambridge. We look forward to a great turnout of Boston, Concord, and Carlisle families at this year’s benefit performance on March 26th, 2010!

As the Abby Fund begins its second year of fundraising and enlisting volunteers, we warmly welcome Aaron Joncas as the new director of the CC METCO program. Mr. Joncas enthusiastically reports that, “over the summer, during the transition of directors, there was a rallying of parental support. There is now a newfound dedication from METCO parents to stay in touch with our department and utilize our resources, including attending parent meetings.”

For the holidays, The Abby Fund is selling 75% dark chocolate bars donated by Theo Chocolate Company. Each bar sells for $5, the same price as Whole Foods Market, yet every cent goes to The Abby Fund. Order a case of 12 for holiday gifts! Look for our chocolate table at this year’s holiday walk in Concord’s town center, next to the Human Right Council’s table!

If you would like to donate directly to the fund, or volunteer please email us at theabbyfund@gmail.com.

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