Council first to help Oprah fight epidemic

The FAMU Section of The National Council of Negro Women is raising money to donate to Oprah Winfrey’s Oprah’s Angel Network for the AIDS pandemic in Africa.

“We are the first HBCU to tackle this topic of raising money for the African AIDS epidemic,” said Sabrina Davis, president of the FAMU section of NCNW.

Each year, Oprah’s Angel Network takes on a different social issue. After taking a trip to Africa late last year, Winfrey took the initiative to support children orphaned by the AIDS epidemic in Africa.

The Mary McLeod Bethune committee of the organization is pioneering the project. The committee chairperson, Stacey Kotei, 21, said she came up with the idea after watching the episode when Oprah visited Africa.

“I got really emotional and I said, “I’m going to bring this back to NCNW and we’re going to do this,”‘ said the junior elementary education student from West Palm Beach.

Members started raising money for Oprah’s Angel Network in January. Kotei said when the project began only members from the Bethune committee participated in the charity event. Now, the organization’s 200 active members are all contributing to the cause.

Davis, a 21-year-old psychology student from Fort Lauderdale, said she hopes the organization can raise $500 this semester and that the Jacksonville Section of NCNW will match that amount.

Funds acquired from the Oprah’s Angel Network effort will be used to help supply the orphans with general needs such as clothing and school materials.

So far, the campus section has raised $261.13 through membership drives and dorm storms.

“I’m very optimistic we will reach our goal,” said Kedra Lamar, 21, co-chair of the Bethune committee.

Kotei said members of NCNW want other organizations to recognize the situation in Africa and help out.

“I think it’s a great opportunity to become a better woman through community service,” said Lamar, a junior nursing student from Monticello.

Kotei said she hopes this initiative will spread to other HBCUs and influence other social organizations to get involved.

“We want the black brothers and sisters to take care of their brothers and sisters in Africa.”

NCNW plans to host a hip-hop talent showcase Tuesday with the Texas Club .

The Bethune committee will also sponsor a prom makeover for several young ladies at Rickards high school in April.

The section will also present Confessions of a MAD Black Woman, a forum that will address relationship issues between men and women.

NCNW holds membership drives every other Friday on the Set for those who wish to learn more about the organization. For more information e-mail NCNW at

contact garrett horne at