4Alive Program Helps Clean Up Iraqi Schools - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/8/04 - Longview

4Alive Program Helps Clean Up Iraqi Schools

  American soldiers put their lives on the line everyday in Iraq, fighting for Iraqi freedoms. But one East Texas soldier is fighting that battle on a very different battlefield; the schools.

"I know that they've got sewer water on the playgrounds. They don't have any desks to sit on. They do have school supplies but they're sitting on the floors," Stephanie Powell says while looking at photos sent by her son who is serving in Iraq.

Iraqi schools are part of a new non-profit organization by members of the U.S. Army. One of the soldiers heading up the effort is Longview resident Trey Yates. It's called 4Alive and Trey's mother wants to get east Texas involved.

"Phase one is to get the schools cleaned up and secure for the children," says Stephanie.

To get the schools cleaned up the 4Alive organization needs donations from corporations or through individual donors. Once that's done they're ready for phase two. That's the phase that could change two worlds.

"Phase two they're going to set up satellites between American schools and Iraqi schools to where the children can interact and learn about each other," says Stephanie.

Essentially an East Texas school would adopt and Iraqi school. Each set of students would write letters and learn about each other.

Stephanie says her son is helping in this effort because he believes this is the way to truly win the battle against terrorism. "He wants the children to learn about us. So that they can trust us and bridge the gap."

Stephanie says her son and the Army's 4Alive organization is dedicated to fighting terrorism through education.

The Army is taking the 4Alive program very seriously. They've dedicated one soldier to working on it full-time and Bob and Elizabeth Dole have even gotten involved.

If you'd like to make a donation or think you're school would like to get involved you can call Stephanie Powell at 903-234-2318.

Amy Tatum reporting.

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