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Raising Awareness for Underprivileged Women in Sierra Leone

Erin Kelley, daughter of Kelley/Uustal co-founding partner Bob Kelley, will be running a half-day marathon in Tallahassee on Sunday, February 3rd to raise awareness and funds for underprivileged girls and women in Sierra Leone, Africa. The catch: they have to run the marathon in a dress; and so do the guys! Erin, together with her teammates, appropriately named the “Chicks Ahoy” have a goal of raising $10,000 ($2,000 each), which translates into sending 30 girls to school for a complete year, plus supplies and support, in the poverty stricken west African country.

The Chicks Ahoy team will be splitting duties with half the team running in the Tallahassee marathon, and the other half in New Orleans. To get more information on Erin, the Chicks Ahoy team, and/or to support and donate, please visit www.doitinadress.com/erinkelley.

Says Erin of her quest “We don’t need a reason to reach out and lend a hand to others, and I believe after a life of private schooling (in said dresses), a closet full of clothes, a roof over my head, food to eat every day, and a huge amount of taking things for granted, that it’s finally time to give back… I have been given a great life! So I want to help make the world a better, brighter place for others…even if that means running 13.1 miles in a school girl’s dress in the Florida heat!”

Do It In A Dress is an initiative of One Girl, a non-profit organization working on behalf of women and girls living in Sierra Leone. Their primary mission is providing education scholarships for girls, improving the quality of schools, creating jobs for women, and providing access to sanitary pads for girls. Since 2011, they’ve provided 150 education scholarships to primary and high school girls and completed their first school rehabilitation project. They also created a social business called LaunchPad that offers affordable, biodegradable sanitary pads to women and girls living in rural areas of Sierra Leone. A lack of sanitary products has been identified as one of the reasons girls miss out on school.

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