Dance to benefit Orphan Aid Liberia
by Mark Andrews
Oct 13, 2013 | 1597 views | 0 0 comments | 38 38 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bartow County resident Hayley Benefield of the organization Orphan Aid Liberia is again hoping to raise money for the cause through the upcoming “Dance for Their Chance” event to be held later this month.

Last year the fundraiser saw about 100 people who gathered to dance, enjoy a chilli cook-off and donate to what Benefield deems a worthy cause.

“It went really well, we raised about $1,000, so I want to do it again this year,” Benefield said. “It’s the same type of family-friendly [event]; we’re having a hot dog cookout, bonfire, music [with a D.J.] and a lot of kids activities and a lot of information.

“I’m trying to do some interactive activities so people will understand how the kids in Liberia live and have it mission-focused so our kids and families here understand more about how they live in Liberia.”

The organization itself was started in 2008 by local real estate agent Daryl Roberts after visiting an orphanage in Liberia, West Africa.

“... He found 25 kids in really bad condition,” Benefield said. “They didn’t have regular food, they were all really sick with no shelter or anything like that, and he started this non-profit, then I got involved in 2010.

“I went on a trip and it completely changed my life. I’ve been there three times.”

Roberts wrote on, “In May of 2008, a Liberian missionary and friend, invited me to join him and some others on a short-term mission trip. I declined my friend’s invitation with a simple ‘no thanks.’

“After I said no God wouldn’t leave me alone. He had other plans. A burden I have had for many years for orphaned children resurfaced. I made contact with my friend again.

“We talked about what was going on and I told him I felt called to work with orphaned children. He said, ‘Daryl, I know exactly where you are supposed to go.’ He told me of an orphanage that was in dire need in the village that he served. As he described to me their impoverished living conditions, their need for food and medical care and much more I knew that I had to go.

“So I finally said ‘yes’ to God’s call not knowing that my life was about to be changed forever.”

“Dance for Their Chance” will be held Saturday, Oct. 26, at 6:30 p.m., at 331 Kingston Highway 293 N.W. in Cartersville. Adult tickets are $10 and children’s tickets — 12 and younger — are $5. Tickets will be sold at the door.