Olathe East High School seniors raising money for foster children through special gala

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OLATHE, Kan. -- Some students at Olathe East High School are using their senior project to make a big impact.

While school was out for majority of students at the high school on Friday, a group of eight seniors involved with the Civic Leadership Academy were busy adding the finishing touches to their special event.

"With the gala we are planning to host about 100 people, so far, and raising some money from that. We will have a silent auction going on, some testimonials. It will just be a night of interaction and networking for a lot of different people," Avneet Sidhu said.

The Civic Leadership Academy benefit gala is an event one year in the making, and the students are in charge of every aspect of planning.

They're working to raise money for KVC Health Systems, a local nonprofit that helps children in foster care or dealing with mental health.

For the students, this gala is much more than just a project.

"This is more than just a project, this is our legacy. This is what we have been working towards. This is what`s going to be left with our names. I can say, 'I, Elizabeth Scott left the Civic Leadership Academy with that event behind me, saying I helped raise `X` amount of dollars to benefit the lives of my peers,'" said senior and web designer for the project, Elizabeth Scott.

The money they hope to raise will go towards the more than 600 children in foster care in Johnson County.

Staff at KVC said every penny counts, and watching the students hard work has been inspiring.

"It is powerful that high school students will care so deeply about other students in their school. It means a lot, not only caring about their peers, but they`re doing something about it," said Vice President of Marketing and Communications at KVC Health Systems, Jenny Kutz.

The gala will be held Saturday at the Ball Conference Center in Olathe, and it starts at 6 p.m. The students are still accepting donations, visit Civicleadershipgala.com to help.

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