Announcing the launch of BlackButterFly – The Christina Ryan Henegar Foundation

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Christina Ryan Henegar left a legacy of goodwill through her charitable contributions and the children she encountered. She had a devotion to her community and a passion for the arts. Despite her world travels, she called Beaufort home and refused to turn her back on the community that had given her so much.

It was Christina’s belief that a positive mental attitude would foster a higher self-esteem, which in turn would stimulate a child’s growth and development along with giving them a sense of security. That’s why we took the time to develop a program and a plan. BlackButterFly – The Christina Ryan Henegar Foundation is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit corporation. Its goal is to achieve higher esteem in children through education, the arts, social, cultural instruction and experience that would not only benefit the community but would create a more compassionate, fulfilling journey for the individual. Christina also believed every young person should have the opportunity to realize his or her dreams regardless of their economic status or any social or intellectual deficiency.

CRHF has teams of experienced, vetted professionals who have agreed to volunteer their time and skills. The Foundation will be partnering with the Beaufort County Library, St. Helena branch along with ArtWorks Community Art Center, Theater and Gallery and the Larew Performing Arts Centre. These partners will allow the use of their facilities for most events and will be offering several classes and/or making available scholarships to the students through the Foundation. Numerous local businesses and individual entrepreneurs have also worked out arrangements with the Foundation for the students to receive scholarships or have their services provided at a reduced rate that the Foundation will cover. The funds to pay for all activities will come from grants, donations and fund raisers. A recent impromptu yard sale netted the Foundation $423. All programs are funded by corporate and individual donations, grants, gifts and fundraising events.

Classes will be offered in computer basic training, starting and managing a savings and checking account, etiquette-how to properly answer a telephone, when and where it is appropriate to use a cell phone, how to dress for every type of event imaginable, makeup, grooming, swimming and more. Gardening, housekeeping, and other basic skill classes will also be available. For the older students a local specialist has offered to teach a class on getting and maintaining good credit, how to apply for a mortgage and home and land ownership. Self-defense courses will be available along with dance, drama, vocal and instrument classes.

CRHF will assist students with scholarships, grants, student loans applications and every aspect of the most up- to- date financial aid available and how to apply for it. The students will also have the opportunity to attend events such as the opera, dance performances and plays. A spring trip to Washington, DC by train is in the works along with a visit to the White House. Most of the children in the area have been no further than Jacksonville, Florida or Charlotte, North Carolina. We want to show them there is a big world outside of Beaufort just waiting for them to come and explore. The Foundation hopes to give them the tools necessary for an extraordinary life experience.

Our launch of the Foundation is Saturday, October 10, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. at the USCB Performing Arts Center. There will be refreshments and live entertainment. The event is free and open to the public.