Anna Norris

Linda Dela Cruz
Wednesday - October 12, 2005
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Anna Norris’ creativity sparked the idea for the “send a kid to camp” package in this year’s silent auction for the Arthritis Foundation’s Savor the Wine event, from 4 to 7 p.m. Oct. 22 at the Gentry Pacific Design Center.

The “send a kid to camp” package includes a backpack, s’mores and a water bottle.

“It represents the camp,” says Norris about the weekend-long Juvenile Arthritis Conference and Camp. “It’s such a great program because aside from swimming, baking and crafts, the kids meet other kids who also have arthritis. It’s so comforting for them to know they are not the only ones with this disease.”

The Kaneohe resident volunteered with the Arthritis Foundation’s silent auction last year. This year, as chair, she says one of the challenges of coordinating an event is enticing people to attend.

“It’s a great event with good food, good music and good wine,” she explains about the function, which is in its third year.

Heavy pupus are catered by Matters of Taste, and Heartstrings provides the music. The wine tasting this year includes a martini bar - and Italian sodas for those who don’t imbibe.

“My husband, Ted, and I are strong believers in giving back,” she says. Her husband is on the board of directors of the Arthritis Foundation.

“Things aren’t going to change unless someone steps up to the plate,” she continues. “It’s important to volunteer, because I can’t expect someone else to help if I’m not helping. If you don’t have money, give time. Time is a precious commodity. If you have no time, donate money - that’s always welcome.”

With their children, 13-year-old Castle freshman Kate and 12-year-old King Intermediate seventh-grader Connor, Norris has been an active volunteer at Kaneohe Elementary, and the SCC and Ohana Board at King Intermediate. She’s also been a Girl Scout leader, and an emcee for her children’s school functions.

When she’s not busy working as an education assistant with the Department of Education helping the students with their reading in the Title I program, the Ahuimanu Valley resident enjoys painting. She’s painted fences, chalkboards and cabinet doors. She even coordinated work on the murals at Kaneohe Elementary School. Norris is donating some of her hand-painted work to the silent auction at the Arthritis Foundation fundraiser. Tickets are $75. For more information, call the Arthritis Foundation at 596-2900.

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