Spring­dale woman head­ing to Do­mini­can Repub­lic this week

United for Kids Foun­da­tion has a lot planned to help chil­dren

Nor'wester (Springdale) - - Front Page - BY CORY HURLEY cory.hurley@thenor­wester.ca

SPRING­DALE, NL — Judy Hamil­ton is de­part­ing for the Do­mini­can Repub­lic for the third time this week.

The lo­cal pub­lic li­brar­ian is a sig­nif­i­cant con­trib­u­tor to the United for Kids Foun­da­tion, an or­ga­ni­za­tion Spring­dale cou­ple Sherry and Roy Clarke be­gan in

2010 to help bet­ter the lives of chil­dren in the Do­mini­can Repub­lic.

She will be sure to visit Ben­jamin’s Li­brary — the room housed in the United for Kids Foun­da­tion’s school in the Do­mini­can Repub­lic that she and her hus­band Greg opened in 2014 in mem­ory of their nephew, Ben­jamin Well­man. She will also spend time with her

10-year-old spon­sor child Ronelly dur­ing her 10 days in the pover­tys­tricken area of Puerto Plata.

Sherry Clarke and her sis­ter in-law Kay Clarke are al­ready in the Do­mini­can Repub­lic, and Hamil­ton will be meet­ing up with them later this week.

They have a par­a­site clinic planned for chil­dren in the area. She will also be pur­chas­ing school sup­plies while there, some­thing she is able to be­cause of fundrais­ing ef­forts such as an an­nual walkathon or­ga­nized by Ken Rice.

For the third straight year, she also ac­cepted Hal­loween treats lo­cally to bring to the chil­dren. It is an ef­fort that has picked up mo­men­tum, and she was blown away by the amount of candy do­nated this year.

“Our chil­dren here pretty well get candy ev­ery sin­gle day,” Hamil­ton said. “There, this is a very spe­cial treat for them.”

She re­ceived so much candy, she can keep some for a sub­se­quent trip to the Do­minica Repub­lic or share with chil­dren in Haiti through the Hands Across the Sea foun­da­tion op­er­ated by an­other Spring­dale na­tive, Karen Hux­ter.

Dur­ing her two pre­vi­ous trips, Hamil­ton stayed on a re­sort. This time she will be stay­ing in the vil­lage Rio San Juan. She is look­ing for­ward to that ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Any­body with a heart stay­ing at a re­sort would have a hard time be­ing around all the food that is there when they have to go out to de­liver food and sup­plies to peo­ple with ba­si­cally noth­ing,” she said.

Since Hamil­ton has been help­ing the United for Kids Foun­da­tion, she said she has adopted a motto of “it is all about the chil­dren.” She be­lieves they are able to slowly make a dif­fer­ence in the Do­mini­can Repub­lic through education. Some­day she hopes their work will help stop the cy­cle of poverty that ex­ists.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Judy Hamil­ton has been ac­cept­ing Hal­loween candy to take to the Do­mini­can Repub­lic to share with chil­dren there. She is leav­ing Fri­day for a 10-day trip to as­sist the United for Kids Foun­da­tion.

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