I heard a very moving presentation last night at Stoneleigh-Burnham School in Greenfield: Sally and Donald Goodrich, founders of the Peter M. Goodrich Memorial Foundation, shown here with scholarship students from Afghanistan.
Sally and Donald lost their son Peter on September 11, 2001. He was on flight 175, the second plane to strike the World Trade Center. Among many other things, Peter was a student of world religion who had a copy of the Qu’ran filled with page markers. To honor his memory, they established the foundation to help the people of Afghanistan.
The foundation raised more than $400,000 to build a school for girls in Logar Province and has also provided funds for a well and a reservoir in Kunar Province, and for scholarships for Afghan students to study abroad.
They also provided help to earthquake victims in Nangahar, and they support an orphanage in Wardak, providing a flock of sheep, arable land, a school and a health clinic to support these young victims of the conflict.
The Foundation’s website has a wealth of information about these projects.
“In both Afghanistan and the United States,” they write, “our hope is to contribute to a new generation of citizens and leaders capable of devising solutions to complex problems.”
Both Sally and Donald described how these efforts, and the bonds they have formed with the Afghan people, have helped them to overcome their grief at the loss of their son.
The talk was part of the Miriam Emerson Peters Speaker Series in Global Awareness.