I first met Etien Beleshi 8 years ago. Her father was the Branch President in our little branch of the LDS church in Tirana, Albania. The Beleshis were a faithful, friendly, service-oriented family that made me feel welcome in a foreign land. Etien especially impressed me with her faithfulness and maturity.
Sadly, a few years ago Etien's father lost his job because of his anticommunist beliefs. Unemployment is severe in Albania and corruption is even worse. Her father has found a job, but he is only paid $200/month. Having lived in Albania, I can tell you that living costs are not significantly lower than they are here in the States. Etien has a little sister so her father is supporting a family of 4 on this salary. Things are very difficult.
Etien is very bright and talented. She plays the violin and enjoys playing basketball. She was even the student body president of her high school. Degrees from the universities in Albania are only recognized in Albania and sometimes not even there. Etien applied to BYU-Idaho and has been accepted. In order for her to fulfill her dream of earning a degree, she needs to raise at least $3000 by March 31st. This is not something her family can do on their own.
There are very few Albanian families where they are all faithful members of the church. The Beleshis are shining stars that are the hope of the future for Albania and the church there.
Please consider helping this wonderful young woman receive an excellent education so she can continue to bless her family and country.
P.S. If you are so inclined, you could even offer to be Etien's sponsor, which means you would commit to support her financially while she attends school here in the States.
- Steve Parke
- Don Perkins
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