Kristin Curtis was set to finish up her nursing degree at Gila Community College when the fire struck.
On June 18 this year, Curtis’ rental home burned just enough to cause the roof to cave in. She and her husband and baby escaped without harm, but the tragedy destroyed all of the nursing books and school supplies she had collected over the years.
“It’s been rough. I lost three years of books, prerequisite material, and all supplies including my computer and printer,” said Curtis. “On average my books cost about $150 to $200.”
She had only one last nursing block to complete when the tragedy struck.
Although she and her husband have insurance, the family has just seen the first of the reimbursement checks in the last couple of weeks.
“School started in August,” said Curtis. “I had to get ready for school anyway.”
The Friends of Rim Country GCC, Inc. hope to help students such as Curtis.
The group plans to hold fund-raising events to raise money for scholarships.
The first event will take place this Saturday, Sept. 22 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on the college campus off of Mud Springs Road.
The Friends will hold a three-course British Tea, (called a Chari-Tea, short for charity tea), with piano music by classical pianist Angelina Ng.
“We hope to raise $500 at this event,” said Gila Community College Payson Campus Dean Pam Butterfield. She also sits on the board of the Friends’ organization.
Since this group is just starting its fund-raising efforts, the Friends plan on offering scholarships for the fall 2013 semester.
“We have yet to set the criteria for the scholarships, but all money raised will go to Payson GCC students,” said Butterfield.
Tickets for the Chari-Tea are still available at GCC, 201 N. Mud Springs Road, and the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce, 100 W. Main St. Cost is $25.
For more information, please call (928) 474-4515.