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Students Raise $25,000 for Bosnian Relief Effort

Donation Fall Short of Original Goal, But Organizers Say Next Phase of Fundraising Will Begin

By Chris Terrio

The Bosnian relief effort undertaken by students last week has raised nearly $25000, organizer said last night, in what they called "a tremendous start."

Though the collected sum from undergraduates fell short of the original $50,000 goal, the effort to raise money is far from finished, they said.

"The first blitz phase is over, but we're not folding up our tents and going home yet," said Shai A. Held '96, one of the group's organizers.

"We are by no mean going to stop," said Martin Lebwohl '96, another organizer. "The atrocities continue and we're going to keep trying to raise money."

Lebwohl mentioned a full-page advertisement in today's Crimson, paid for by the Harvard Student Agencies, which he said members of the group hope will reach those students who have not yet contributed.

"Hopefully, people who weren't visited will see the ad and call with contributions," Lebwohl said.

Despite the continuing efforts, organizers said they would not delay sending the amount gathered for the cause to the war-torn region.

"We're going to try get the money out fast," organizers John R. Wagley '95, a Crimson editor, said yesterday.

While the effort to collect money from undergraduate did not produce enough to purchase a truck to bring food and supplies into Sarajevo, the amount raised will be put toward that purpose, organizers said.

"Every dollar will go toward people who are suffering," Held said.

Leaders of the door-to-door campaign said last night that they plan to expand the relief effort to include the remaining parts of the University.

"We're going to seek contributions from the graduate school, the faculty and other supporters from outside the College," Lebwohl said.

He added that they will solicit corporate sponsors for the effort. "We'd like to get some outside sources to match what we've raised," he said.

Despite the failure so far to yield the originally projected amount, organizers called the effort an "overwhelming" success.

"I'm very happy with the amount," Wagley said. "Just because we haven't reached the goal doesn't mean that the undergraduate community hasn't given generously."

"It was a tremendous achievement," Lebwohl said. "Harvard is no longer ignoring the terrible suffering and genocide that's going on."

Organizers emphasized that the students' relief efforts have sent an important message to the Harvard community.

"This was an incredibly important moment for this campus," Held said. "We've moved from platitude to action."

"With the size of the response that we received, we feel that this community has learned that Harvard students care," Lebwohl said.

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