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Family raises funds to adopt girls

By Sherri Ellington Amanda Hollar-Bash and her family are planning a Turkey Bingo at Affairs To Remember in Griffin in their continued attempts to bring two teenage Eastern European orphans to the U.S. for adoption. The event will be on Nov. 16, from 2-4 p.m. Time is running out for Valeria Vandalova and Maria Kovalchuk, who have lived in an orphanage in Chervonograd, Ukraine, since they were 5. They will age out of the system at age 16 and have nowhere to go. ’Affairs to Remember donated use of the venue and also has a Bingo cage/game,’ said Hollar-Bash. ‘So far we have had commitments from several people to donate turkeys. I really want to make this a big event open to the public.’ People will play bingo at the event and win a turkey for Thanksgiving. Snacks will be available. The cost is $10. ’My event at the Molena Festival went well,’ said Hollar-Bash. ‘I ended up making a little over $100 from homemade games of golf putt-putt and Plinko that my husband Chris Bash made for our church fall festival. I gave away stuffed animals that my 10-year-old, Wesley Hollar, donated from his collection.’ The necessary documents were submitted to Ukrainian officials Oct. 21 and the family, which includes Russian adoptee Ian Bash, 4, is waiting for approval and travel dates to go see the boys’ potential sisters. ’So far we’ve raised about $7,000 of the $15,900 we need to pay the facilitator,’ she said. ‘I’ve already sent him $4,000, so only $11,900 is left to go to pay him.’ The family needs $25,000 to adopt Valeria and Maria and bring them to a forever home on the Lamar and Pike county lines. Of that, $15,900 up front will go for facilitator’s fees. The rest is for travel, lodging, food and clothes for the girls, who will leave the orphanage with nothing. Hollar-Bash is the widow of Sgt. Robert Lee ‘Bobby’ Hollar Jr. who was killed in action in Iraq on Sept. 1, 2005. Email for barbecue or raffle tickets or to make donations.Â

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