BETHANY, W.Va. — A wide range of programs and activities designed to raise awareness of the AIDS pandemic in Africa and the plight of children living in poverty, especially in the Congo, will highlight Project (RED) Week, which will be observed Feb. 11-15 on the campus of Bethany College.

Sponsored by the College’s Student National Education Association and the Student Activities Council, Bethany’s Project (RED) Week was inspired by the international Product (RED) campaign founded by U2 front man Bono and Bobby Shriver to raise money and awareness for The Global Fund. 

Bethany’s Project (RED) Week will be used to support the educational efforts of EduCongo. In a country ravaged by civil war and the AIDS pandemic, millions of children are left without education and without hope. EduCongo is a non-profit organization committed to enriching the lives of underprivileged children by providing them with a quality education.

In the Congo:
  • $25 can provide one child’s school materials for an entire year
  • $50 can cover one teacher’s salary for an entire month
  • $150 can cover one child’s tuition for an entire year
  • $500 can help purchase a generator to provide electricity for a school
  • $1,000 can help renovate a school’s clean-water system
  • $10,000 can build a new school

Lou Radja, executive director and co-founder of EduCongo, will kick off Project (RED) Week on Feb. 11 by delivering the keynote address at 7 p.m. in Bethany’s historic Commencement Hall. Radja, a native of the Congo, will participate in an educational outreach during his stay on campus. In addition to making presentations to several classes at the College on Monday and Thursday, Radja will spend Tuesday and Wednesday touring the area and speaking at several local schools. 

Radja’s speech is the first of several events aimed at uniting the campus and the community in support of this cause. These events include a Project (RED) fashion show, a Project (RED) dinner and Project (RED) fundraisers at home basketball games. The week concludes with a special (RED) Valentine’s Day dance at Commencement Hall on Feb. 15. Additional fundraising is planned during the week through sales of (RED) T-shirts, candy, valentines and other items.

Many clubs have already volunteered their services for the project and individuals are also welcome. Education Department Chair Dr. Keely Camden and Associate Dean of Students Brian Fernandes are team advisors for Project (RED). Anyone else interested in helping out should contact Brian Fernandes.