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A Buffalo-based non-profit, International Child Advancement, is hosting a fashion show to raise money for a children's orphanage. The organization's Third Annual Empowered Fashion Show Fundraiser will be virtual this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The virtual show will be held on Saturday, May 15, 2021, from 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM.

The show will feature an original hand-made collection, designed and presented by orphans from the GUAOA orphanage in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The show will also feature pieces from two Black-women-owned Western New York Boutiques - The Restyle Loft and Ms. Eye Candy. After the show, you'll be able to shop their looks, as well as pieces from the orphanage.

The goal of the fashion show is to raise $10,000 to benefit the orphanage. Monies raised during the fashion show will be used to purchase a small building, which will house vocational training at the orphanage. The funds will also be used to buy sewing, computer and agricultural equipment.

In a press release emailed directly to me about the event, Evelyn Kessler, Founder and Executive Director of ICA, said,

“We really want to showcase the success of the children we support. So many children in the DRC don’t have access to an education and our vocational training not only gives them this access but also teaches them valuable skills that set them up for a better life. The children in our sewing program are insanely talented, and we hope to empower them further by providing them with an opportunity to show their work outside of the orphanage.”

The show will feature a musical performance by Henri Star, a concert violinist, accompanied by students from his Muhammad School of Music.

If you purchase one of the first 25 "early bird" tickets, you will receive a complimentary charcuterie box from Meet and Eat Charcuterie, a cocktail kit from TABS by O, and be entered into a drawing for your chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card. Tickets are $50 each and can be purchased online at www.childadvancement.org. If you are unable to attend, you can make a donation here.

International Child Advancement is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Amherst, NY. Founded in 2016, ICA supports orphaned children in the Kivu region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) through educational sponsorship, vocational training, and mentoring. ICA also assists refugee and underprivileged children locally in the WNY area. ~ International Child Advancement

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