Tournament takes swing at AIDS

Ruth Mitchell, left, and Rachel Gallagher, 13, discuss the upcoming Swing at AIDS Charity Golf Tournament at the Redlands Mesa Golf Course in Grand Junction.  “Just donating $20 can help with things that we take for granted,” Gallagher said.



There will be an 8 a.m. shotgun start May 14 at the Swinging at AIDS Charity Golf Tournament and Silent Auction at Redlands Mesa Golf Club.

Price is $135 per golfer and $500 per four-person team. The price includes all fees, cart, prizes and lunch. A hole-in-one on the 17th hole wins a Chevy Malibu.

For information, call Buzz Schoenbeck at 270-8031 or e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). To sponsor a hole or a golf cart, call Annie Arnoldy at 242-4850.

It’s a bit overwhelming to think about how far a small donation can go in a Third World country.

There’s the example of a paraplegic African woman whose husband carried her everywhere. It wasn’t until a donated wheelchair arrived that the couple’s quality of life undoubtedly changed for the better.

Many similar stories could be realized if the Center for the Church and Global AIDS can raise enough money to send donated medical supplies to Kenya.

The group has collected $400,000 worth of donated supplies that are ready for shipment, but until it gets $20,000 for the shipping costs, those supplies will sit in a warehouse.

Local organizers hope the first Swinging at AIDS golf tournament can help raise money to create better lives for others.

“For every dollar raised, we’re shipping $20 worth of medical supplies,” said Ruth Mitchell, an event organizer. “We really underestimate what a difference a small donation can make.”

All proceeds from the May 14 golf tournament at Redlands Mesa Golf Club go toward shipping costs or to benefit the Western Colorado AIDS Project, or WestCAP.

There will be a silent auction, and donors are welcome to contribute items for it.

Silent auction items already donated include round-trip airfare to Denver, Colorado Rockies tickets, gift certificates to The Winery and gift certificates to local gyms.

Donors can sponsor a hole on the golf course, or they can sponsor a golf cart, displaying their name or their company’s name.

The fundraiser is ecumenical, and members of three of the area’s Methodist churches have helped organize the event.

Medical supplies have been collected from around the state and from local hospitals by a nonprofit group, Project C.U.R.E.

The supplies are slated for shipment to the impoverished and rural Maua Hospital in Kenya.

Rachel Gallagher of Grand Junction became interested in fundraising after learning about the effort of her grandfather, Don Messer of Denver, who started the Center for the Church and Global AIDS.

Gallagher, 13, said the stories about how the medical supplies are changing lives astound her.

“It’s amazing how much one person can do to change a person’s life,” she said.

“Just donating $20 can help with things that we take for granted.”


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