Peruvian children's second chance 

Evening of entertainment with slide show from Dowtown Jay Brown to raise funds for impoverished children

What: Mundo De Ninos Fundraiser

When: Monday, Jan. 16, 8 p.m.

Where: MY Millennium Place

Tickets: $10/$7.50

Touched by the challenges underprivileged children in Peru face, such as drug addiction, alcoholism and broken homes, Whistlerite Valerie Bergeron was inspired to host an evening of entertainment Monday, Jan. 16 at 8 p.m. at MY Millennium Place to raise funds to better these children’s lives.

"For the first time in my life, I realized that an individual needs simple things such as compassion, love and affection in order to succeed in life," Bergeron said.

"Our main purpose (of the fundraiser is) to ensure that these children have pleasurable memories from their childhood. We want to see these children lead a safe life and look forward to a healthy and productive future."

The Mundo de Ninos fundraiser will help these wishes become a reality.

The lively evening includes a slide show of landscape and action images taken in Peru orchestrated to live music from guitarist Dowtown Jay Brown, bassist James Lawson and drummer Evan Biswanger.

Mundo de Ninos is a German-based non-profit organization, which seeks to rehabilitate street children in Peru. The association organizes, finances and supervises a voluntary project in Peru.

Organizers say more and more children are forced into the streets in Peru. Poverty, abandonment, abuse and violence are all attributed to children choosing to live in inhumane conditions on the streets. Many survive selling sweets, cleaning shoes, begging or stealing, but nearly all of them are exposed to cheap drugs such as sniffing glue.

The Peru project will house 20 street kids from Trujillo, the second largest city in Peru, giving the children the opportunity, resources and support needed to re-integrate back into society.

The project will provide accommodation, food, clothes, medical care, school materials, education and vocational training along with care from foster mothers, psychologists and social workers.

"Francisco, Enero, Stalin, Jesus and many others were all united through their unfortunate past," Bergeron said. "As early as five years old, they had fallen on the same path – drug addiction or alcoholism, broken families and so on. For that reason, on my second trip to Peru, I decided to get involved with Mundo De Ninos."

General tickets are $10 and $7.50 for Club Shred members. For tickets, call 604-935-8410.

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