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Minnechaug NHS raising money for a good cause

By Rick Sobey

Staff Intern

The National Honor Society (NHS) at Minnechaug Regional High School is holding its fifth annual basket raffle to support research of a disease that needs assistance. The society at Minnechaug is currently raising money for the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation.

Under the guidance of Minnechaug NHS advisor Sara Martin, event chairs Karson Baird, Gregory Moore, David Sugrue and Christina Vachon are organizing several gift baskets. These baskets for the raffle were created by NHS members and friends.

A few examples from the selection of baskets are the Movie Lovers' Baskets, Book Lovers' Baskets, Coffee Lovers' Baskets and the Valentine's Day Baskets, which are just in time for the holiday on Feb. 14.

In addition, event chairs started contacting local businesses in early January about donations to the raffle, and many businesses responded with gift certificates and baskets for the cause. Some of the businesses that donated include Quinn's Jewelers, Friendly's Restaurant, Three Sisters Chocolate, The Scented Garden, The Scantic Valley YMCA, Robb Carty Salon, Pam's Paperbacks and Pop's Pizza.

According to Martin, the NHS hopes to raise $3,000 in the next few weeks. She believes that it is essential that the organization at Minnechaug raises money for this cause.

"The fact that Mitochondrial Disease is not too well known means that research for the disease is not as well-funded as some other diseases," Martin said, "so NHS decided a basket raffle is a good way to raise awareness about the disease as well as raise funds for research."

Mitochondrial Disease is present in a variety of disorders; therefore, it is often difficult to diagnose.

The disease is a failure of the energy-producing compartments within cells, causing damage to cells of the brain, heart, liver, kidneys, muscles and the skeletal, endocrine and respiratory systems. The disease primarily affects children and it impacts the quality of life and life expectancy of the victim.

Each basket is raffled individually, so ticket holders have a better chance of winning the basket they desire.

Raffle tickets went on sale on Jan. 25 and the winners for the baskets will be drawn on Feb. 13. In order to purchase $1 raffle tickets before the Feb. 13 deadline, contact any NHS member or contact Martin by calling the school at 596-9011 or by e-mailing her at