Navajo Torreon-Star Lake COVID-19 Relief Fund

UPDATE: Letter of Appreciation  from Navajo Nation to Sophia Liang for Conducting the Fundraiser

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all of us, more so for those who could least afford to protect themselves against the devastating impact of this pandemic. Case in point: while the Navajo people comprise a mere 10.5% of the population of New Mexico, they represent over 45% of the COVID-19 cases in the state. A few local heroes—Wally Toledo, community leader, Torreón/Star Lake N.M. Chapter, Navajo Nation, Shanell and Haven Gordo, local Torreón Navajo couple, and Monty Walters, respected elder of the Navajo Nation—have all been working tirelessly to lessen the crushing financial, physical, emotional, and psychological impact this pandemic has wrought within their respective local communities.

Although the fundraiser lists Jianmin Liang as its official beneficiary, the true beneficiaries are the members of the Navajo Nation, who reside in—and around—the Torreón/Star Lake N.M. Chapter of the Navajo reservation. In this regard, over $1000 from the fundraiser has already been used to support Shanell and Haven Gordo—a local Torreón Navajo couple—continue their efforts at operating various social service and educational programs supporting their local Torreón Navajo community.  For the last five years, Shanell and Haven have operated an after school program assisting local students with their homework assignments, as well as hosting bimonthly public family outings, and facilitating other special events comprised of various reading, star gazing, craft, robotics, movie night, and game night programs, all benefiting the local children residing in the Torreón, N.M. section of the Navajo reservation. Your donations have been put to good use purchasing three computer laptops to enhance remote learning during this critical time, especially when the local schools in Torreón, N.M. have all been closed, and purchasing twenty-five Christmas presents that were distributed, on Christmas Eve, to needy Torreón children whose parents have been economically displaced by the COVID-19 pandemic.

UPDATE: The gifts are delivered to the children!

A significant portion of the proceeds—$1000—has already been disbursed to Monty Walters, a respected elder of the Navajo Nation, residing on a ranch located just outside the Torreón/Star Lake N.M. Chapter of the Navajo reservation. Adding insult to injury is the sad fact that far too many Navajo families in Mr. Walters’ local community cannot afford to bury their loved ones who have passed away from COVID-19. In this regard, Mr. Walters is using most of the proceeds he has received from the fundraiser to provide grants to help local families defray the costs of burying their loved ones.
52843186_1610920018398780_r.jpeg52843186_1610920046891707_r.jpeg*Kialo Winters is the eldest child of deceased Isabelle Folsomito. 

Mr. Walters will use the rest of the proceeds to provide transportation to homebound elders of the Navajo Nation, residing in, and around, the Torreón/Star Lake N.M. Chapter of the Navajo reservation, who have been economically displaced by the COVID-19 pandemic, to get to their local food banks in order to retrieve their weekly food rations. 
52843186_161092022521204_r.jpeg52843186_1610920240623815_r.jpegFood ration and the delivery of food ration. 

In this way, Monty Walters will be instrumental in helping local Navajo families, who lost loved ones to the COVID-19 pandemic, bury their loved ones, and will assist local desperate homebound elders survive a very difficult period of their lives. 

All future donations raised will benefit the good work performed by Shanell and Haven Gordo in running various social service and educational programs benefiting the residents of their local community of Torreón, New Mexico, especially the children. Finally, all the work will occur under the direct auspices of Wally Toledo, community leader, Torreón/Star Lake N.M. Chapter, Navajo Nation. 

Thank you, in advance, for all your generous donations. 

Sophia Liang


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Organizer and beneficiary

Sophia Liang 
Irvine, CA
Jianmin Liang 
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