Thousands donated for school in African village stolen from Yuma Rotary

YUMA, Ariz. – More than three-hundred people live in the remote African village of Ntabayengwe in Zimbabwe, Africa without clean water and basic necessities. But after a visit to the village, Brad Sackrider teamed up with Yuma Rotarians to change that. Their plan now is to build a school.

“I was there early march and I looked them in the eye and said this is what’s coming this is what will happen. And they were excited about that,” said Sackrider. Local children now walk six to nine miles to get to the closest school. So Rotarian Kim Norris spear-headed a fund-raiser that gathered $16,000 in one year.

“Because they’re poor, they don’t have work. Around 80% are unemployed. And when they do work they make one dollar a day, “said Norris. She and eleven others bought tickets to fly out themselves and see the project through. But just days before their trip that money was stolen.

An unknown hacker used the e-mail account on the receiving end and had the funds transferred elsewhere. “I feel like I let everybody down, I felt like I let the people in Africa down it was just overwhelming to try and process all that in my mind. I had a hard time with it, I’m still having a hard time with it,” said Norris.

It was with a second e-mail that Norris understood the writer wasn’t their guy. Now with a whole village depending on Norris and the group, the pressure is high, and the club will have to deliver the bad news.

“I don’t know how we’re going to face them,” said Sackrider. Yuma Rotary has two weeks to raise more funds in hopes of bringing what they says is a much needed school to Ntabayengwe.

To donate send a check to Rotary District 5500 Foundation at P.O. Box 6206 Yuma, Arizona 85366.

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