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Today Show Ends Of Earth Series Helps Save Kilimanjaro School From Closing

NEW YORK, October 5, 2009 /PRNewswire/ – Ann Curry embarked on a climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro as part of the Today show's Ends of the Earth Series. While Ms. Curry expected to find a shrinking rainforest and glacier, she didn't expect to meet someone like 13-year-old Belinda Amon, nor did she know what an impact her report could bring to Belinda and her 935 classmates.

Natema primary school near Mt. Kilimanjaro has been saved from closing thanks to the awareness that Ms. Curry and Today's Ends Of Earth Series created last Fall, according to the Kilimanjaro Education Foundation (KEF).

Prior to her climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro last November, Ms. Curry visited a Massai village and met with 13-year-old Belinda Amon of Natema primary school. There, she learned about conditions the school was facing, including water issues and unsanitary bathrooms. Belinda told Ms. Curry that she wants to grow up to be a president, a doctor or a nurse and she walks a half hour to get to school every day. She also told Ms. Curry that her school might have to close due to water shortages.

Ms. Curry also spoke to New Yorker, Todd Grossman, founder of KEF, and learned about the non profit's efforts in trying raise $25,000 to build bathrooms with running water to save the Natema school of 935 students from closing.

"I wish every person who contributed to this effort to know their lives have mattered to our world. These children love learning in a way we ourselves have forgotten, and this love will help them, their families and the Massai people rise to match the greatness of Mt. Kilimanjaro," said Ann Curry.

Today featured Ms. Curry 's visit to the school, and the awareness gained resulted in KEF reaching its financial goal and constructing a bathroom house for students and teachers. This is the second such bathroom house that KEF has built in the region.

"Ann Curry is one of the greatest humanitarians in our era," said Mr. Grossman. "She has helped improve people's lives and has reduced suffering all over the world. We are very thankful that she was able to visit Natema Primary, meet with Belinda and help create awareness in saving this school from closing. I spoke to many people who were touched by her coverage and wanted to help in the form of donations, as well as embarking on charity climbs with KEF. She was very inspiring."

About Kilimanjaro Education Foundation: Kilimanjaro Education Foundation (KEF), founded in 2006, is incorporated in New York State and organized as a 501(c)(3). KEF strives to improve education and to build school facilities for underprivileged children in Tanzania and other countries bordering Kilimanjaro. KEF's volunteers and directors share in and impart not only the Foundation's passion for children and education, but also in KEF's core values of honesty, integrity, creativity and imagination. In 2010, KEF plans to apply for membership to the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) who just held their fifth annual meeting September 22-25, in New York City.

Press Contact:

Jeffrey Durosko
Jeff Durosko Communications
Todd Grossman
Kilimanjaro Education Foundation