Westwood NY chapter stages fundraiser this Saturday

October 03, 2017
A Westwood High School after a fire in May.
Inside the damaged kitchen at Westwood High.
Students of Westwood High School in Trelawny.

The New York branch of the Westwood Old Girls' Association (WOGANY) will be staging a 'Fall Fundraiser' this Saturday at the Bay Ridge Manor in Brooklyn, New York.

All proceeds from the event will go towards the school's post-fire rebuilding project and the purchasing of classroom desks.

Westwood suffered a significant setback earlier this year when a major fire destroyed a section of the school.

"Our beloved alma mater was rocked by a fire during the early morning hours in May," said Jenniffer Brown, president of WOGANY, in recalling the incident. "The fire destroyed the building that housed the kitchen, dining room, matron's quarters and storerooms. We must rebuild and with that in mind, the New York chapter changed our fall fundraising goals to include this initiative."




This weekend's fundraiser is yet another attempt by Westwood's past students to ensure their alma mater rises from the ash. In May, Cheryl Spence, a member of the South Florida chapter of WOGA, started a campaign on GoFundMe to raise US$100,000 (approximately J$13 million) to facilitate the rebuilding efforts of not only the kitchen and dining room, but also the science lab. That effort has thus far yielded US$7,265 (approximately J$945,000).

Saturday's fundraiser will pay homage to women from the Roaring '20s and the gains they made in literature, entertainment, sports and the suffrage movement. It is also a celebration of Westwood Old Girls Association, which was founded in the 1882.

Women attending the fundraiser are encouraged to dress in flapper dresses and stockings, and the men in pants and vests. Flapper head gears and top hats will be issued on arrival.

Lesleyann Samuel, president of the Union of Jamaican Alumni Associations, will be the special guest speaker, while Janice Julian, marketing and public relations manager at Caribbean Food Delights in New York, will be the master of ceremonies. The ticket cost is US$125 per person and includes premium open bar, dancing and complimentary valet parking.

Westwood High School, situated in the hills of Stewart Town, Trelawny, is a boarding and day school for girls. The school is celebrating its 135th anniversary this year. The WOGA New York chapter was formed last year with the mission of connecting Westwood High School alumni; promoting ongoing interaction through meaningful engagements and programmes, creating a lifelong community for increased awareness and participation; and deepening the philanthropic commitment to enriching the lives of students at Westwood High School.

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