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Leader in fighting child trafficking speaking in Laconia Sunday

LACONIA — Rob Morris, the president and co-founder of Love146, an international nonprofit organization working to combat child trafficking and exploitation, will be speaking in the Lakes Region on Sunday.

Morris will be speaking at the Lakes Region Vineyard Church – Lakeport, 176 Mechanic Street, on Sunday, May 25, at both the 8:30 and 10:30 a.m. services. Contemporary worship music and a coffee break are part of each meeting. For information, call 527-2662

People wanting to support the work are invited to take part in a "Put Your Foot Down To End Child Trafficking" benefit hike up Mount Major Sunday, from 7 a.m. – 5 p.m.

A suggested donation of $25 per family is requested, then participants can take the short hike up Mount Major.

In 2002, Morris was among a group of four young people who traveled to Southeast Asia to learn about child sex trafficking. As part of an undercover operation, investigators took him and some other group members into a brothel where young girls were being sold for sex.

"We found ourselves standing shoulder-to-shoulder with predators in a small room, looking at little girls through a pane of glass," Morris recalled. "All of the girls wore red dresses with a number pinned to their dress for identification. They sat, blankly watching cartoons on TV. They were vacant, shells of what a child should be. There was no light in their eyes, no life left... These children... raped each night... seven, 10, 15 times every night... They were so young. Thirteen, eleven years old... It was hard to tell. Sorrow covered their faces with nothingness.

"Except one girl. One girl who wouldn't watch the cartoons. Her number was 146. She was looking beyond the glass. She was staring at us with a piercing gaze. There was still fight left in her eyes. There was still life left in this girl," he explained.

Some time later, the brothel was raided and shut down, and the children rescued.  But #146 was no among them, Morris reported.

"We don't know what happened to her but we will never forget here," he said. "She changed the course of all of our lives... This is the story that sparked our abolition movement."


Last Updated on Friday, 23 May 2014 10:24

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Mimedancer workshop on May 28 in Plymouth

PLYMOUTH — Renowned mimedancer Karen Montanaro will present a workshop on Wednesday, May 28 at Plymouth Elementary School for educators, parents and all those who work with children. Montanaro's visit is sponsored by the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire

The workshop is part of a regional residency exploring creativity and communication without words. Entitled "Speaking Without Words — Using Movement and Body Awareness To Reach All Students," the workshop is open to the public. Karen will lead participants in exploring ways to introduce students of all ages, abilities and learning styles to important movement concepts. Participants will learn strategies they can use to help children be more focused, creative and collaborative.

Networking begins at 3:30 p.m. and the workshop gets underway from 4-5:30 p.m. Tickets are $15, or $12 for AANNH members; scholarships are available.

Last Updated on Friday, 23 May 2014 10:21

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5 Raft-a-Palooza Early Bird Registration through Memorial Day

LACONIA — On Sunday, August 3, NH LAKES' LakeFest 2014: Raft-a-Palooza, presented by Binnie Media, will take over Lake Winnipesaukee's Endicott Rock Park in Laconia in the hunt for Guinness gold.

Raft-a-Palooza is an attempt to capture the Guinness World Record for the largest free floating raft of canoes and kayaks; organizers have their sights set on more than 2,100 boats. Until Memorial Day, Raft-a-Palooza registration is just $5 per boat; online registration is simple and fast at www.nhlakefest.org.

Raft-a-Palooza attracts paddlers of all ages and levels of experience. Reasonably priced boat rentals are available during online registration: single kayak ($30), canoe ($40), tandem (2-person) kayak ($45). Rental boats will be available for on-the-beach pick up.

New to Raft-a-Palooza this year are an expanded team competition, incentives for optional fundraising, and an exciting Share the Fun – Share the Funds program to benefit area nonprofits and local lake groups. Visit www.nhlakefest.org or call 603-226-0299 to learn more.

In addition to offering a fun-filled day of paddling and on-shore entertainment, LakeFest also educates the boating public about the vital Clean, Drain & Dry! technique to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species. Funds raised through LakeFest 2014 directly support NH LAKES' work to protect local lakes and their watersheds through education and advocacy. Since 2002, hundreds of paid and volunteer NH LAKES Lake Hosts have conducted more than 576,000 courtesy boat inspections and have made more than 1,409 "saves" of aquatic invasive plant fragments that were about to enter or had just left a waterbody.

Last Updated on Friday, 23 May 2014 10:07

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White Dragon Martial Arts "Kick For Cancer" thanks Globe Manufacturing for 25 years of Support

GILMANTON — Since White Dragon Martial Arts held its first Kick for Cancer Martial Arts tournament  back in 1989, Globe Manufacturing Company has been the sole corporate sponsor for the event, which has raised abut $150,000 for local hospice efforts.

Since the start of the tournament, when our school was located in Pittsfield, our tournament has grown to become the largest and oldest charity martial arts tournament in the state. Throughout the years, this has become an international event, drawing martial artists and competitors from Florida, Michigan, Canada, New York, and all of the New England states.

Martial arts teacher, Georganne Verigan, who later became the Grandmaster or head of our martial arts system, wanted to do something to honor friends and family that she had lost to cancer and started the tournament. When our school, White Dragon Martial Arts, moved from Pittsfield to Gilmanton, it continued the tradition of hosting the annual Kick for Cancer Charity Martial Arts Tournament.

This year because of the generosity of our sponsors and participants, the  total donation to local hospice programs was over $16,000.

Last Updated on Friday, 23 May 2014 10:04

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