Does Your Bridal Registry Have O for Orphans “Help us Build an AIDS Orphanage,” Engaged Couple Ask

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In the Category for "Best Humanitarian Wedding Present" - Leading Abstinence speaker/Miss Black California, Lakita Garth and fiancé Jeffrey Wright of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.), ask wedding guests to help them build an AIDS orphanage.

So what do you give as a wedding present to a couple who are social commentators, authors and dedicated devotees to humanitarian efforts? Forget the china and the toasters. Lakita and Jeff want an orphanage!

“For our wedding, we are asking our friends to help us build our extended family in Uganda,” says Lakita Garth, Abstinence leader and Miss Black California 1995. “After our engagement we committed to the monthly support of 15 AIDS orphans, but we are asking our friends to join us in the bold task of helping us build the home for the children,” explains C. Jeffrey Wright, President of UMI. (Urban Ministries, Inc.)

More than 11 million African children have lost parents to HIV/AIDS and the number will reach more than 20 millions by 2010. (UNAIDS/UNICEF) Uganda has over 1.4 million AIDS orphans. Many experts believe that orphans are best cared for in family units or foster homes so Jeff and Lakita decided to partner with the African Renewal Ministries, located in Ggamba, Uganda. “In an age of overabundance, instead of gifts we want to build a house for those who have nothing,” states the bride-to-be Lakita. An orphanage for 15-17 children costs about $17,000 to construct and is located near a school and has a garden.

“Lakita and I believe that God has called us to aid in what has been described as the greatest humanitarian crisis in the history of the world,” explains Jeff. “We know that alone we cannot change the world, but together we can change the lives of a few Ugandan children forever.”

Who is this unique couple? They are well known speakers, leaders and political activists.    Rev. C. Jeffrey Wright is President of Urban Ministries, Inc., which is the largest independent African American owned and operated Christian Media Company. He is also on the board of Fuller Theological Seminary. Prior to accepting the presidency of UMI in 1995, Wright was vice president of corporate development for Bristol-Myers Squibb Company.                    

Lakita is an internationally recognized Abstinence leader who speaks to over a half million school children a year. Author of The Naked Truth, Lakita has been featured on Politically Correct, Nightline and The 700 Club, as well as in Vogue, Essence and Seventeen.

“We hope that others will see that anyone or group can do this! When we link together it is amazing how far we can reach around the world.” Jeffrey and Lakita continue, “The world changes with one life at a time and everyone is called to help.”

Lakita and Jeff will be married August 12th in the Los Angeles area. Those interested in helping them build the orphanage or learning more are invited to visit their website and click on Our African Orphanage project.

For Bookings for Lakita or print media, contact Emily Stamper, Ambassador Speaker Bureau, 615 370-4700.

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Lynn Wilford Scarborough,

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