When Sumayya Sulaiman learned about the water crisis in Flint, Mich., her thoughts turned to the babies who had been drinking formula mixed with lead-tainted water.
Young children are particularly vulnerable to the toxic levels of lead in Flint’s water supply. And Sulaiman, 20, a Herndon resident, wanted to do something to help.
She decided that collecting donations of bottled water to deliver to Flint would be an ideal project for the Northern Virginia chapter of Women Empowering Women — Diamonds in the Rough, which she recently started with her longtime friend, Juli Diaz-Perez. Late last month, the group set up a table outside the Giant supermarket on Dranesville Road in Sterling to collect donations of water and other supplies.
The programs — GetOnTrack in Prince William and LINC (Linking Individuals & Navigating Care) in Loudoun — aim to help clients recover by providing treatment and support services soon after their first psychotic break. The programs also help families cope with a life-changing experience that one mother described as “overwhelming.”
For the past two years, local officials and volunteers have organized drives that collected more than 43,000 blankets for delivery to refugees in Turkey. This year, as the number of Syrian refugees in Turkey has swelled to more than 2 million, the drive is being expanded to include new and “gently used” winter coats, as well as blankets and cash donations.
The Greater Manassas Children’s Choir, an offshoot of the Manassas Chorale, is divided by age into two singing groups, each with a director. Becky Verner leads about 50 children in grades 5 through 8, and Susan Dommer is head of a smaller group of children in grades 2 through 4.