Women Roll the Dice to Raise Money for Literacy
Dozens of people gathered at Celebration Hall Monday night to roll the dice, have some fun and support a good cause.
The service organization Altrusa International of Centre County sponsored Ladies Bunco Night to help raise funds for both the Mid-State Literacy Council as well as the Rwandan Learning Center. The Mid-State Literacy Council provides services to help meet the literacy needs of adults in the region.
Bunco is a parlour game played with dice. Teams have to roll a certain number to win. Winners are given a "bunco bunny", which are exchanged for small prizes, including gift cards to local restaurants and book stores.
Phyllis Corman, treasurer for the Altrusa club says, "Its an opportunity for a social gathering."
It's also an opportunity to support literacy – not only in our area, but around the world.
Carol Baney, a volunteer with Altrusa, went on a mission trip to Rwanda to help develop a school. Baney took books to Rwanda to support a library and an English as a Second Language program.
Altrusa wants to raise more than $1,000, which was the amount of money it raised at the group's last bunco fundraiser, local Altrusa president Brendy Ruby says. The group tries to hold three fundraisers each year.
"There is a $30 registration fee [for bunco]," Ruby says. "We do have a year round fundraiser. We are selling handbags to support to help those affected in Indonesia from the 2004 tsunami."
About 20 young women in villages in the Indonesian region of Aceh produce these bags sold by Altrusa. People can buy wallets as low as $22 dollars, to larger bags worth about $190. Half of these proceeds go to support those affected by the tsunami while the other half goes Altrusa's other projects, which include the Mid-State Literacy Council as well as the Rwandan Learning Center.
Ruby says that only half of the people that came to support Altrusa tonight were actually members of the organization itself.
Corman says Altrusa is primarily a women's organization but does have one male member. The local Altrusa chapter was started in 1953 when the Harrisburg chapter of the organization talked to local residents to see if they wanted to start a chapter in the Centre region.
"We used to have certain groups represented in the organization, such as so many people being teachers," Ruby says. "We've moved away from that though, we don't want to discourage anyone from joining."
Click HERE to learn more about Altrusa International of Centre County.