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Seven Friends From Catholic Schools Plan Music Festival for Syrian Refugees

“Project Syria LIVE,” a music festival fund-raiser to benefit families displaced by the civil war in Syria will be performed Friday, April 28, at Kingsland Point Park in Sleepy Hollow.

Highlights of the 5:30 to 10 p.m. festival include a “Battle of Bands” featuring local groups and other talented youths from local high schools, with special guests such as “The Voice” finalist Amanda Ayala.

The evening will feature speakers and showcase exhibits highlighting the plight of the displaced, with a special focus on teenage refugees. Food vendors will be available throughout the event.

Seven committed friends—all juniors at Catholic high schools in Westchester and Manhattan—banded together last October to establish Relief United, a newly formed sub charity of Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA), a global charity founded in 1926 dedicated to providing humanitarian help for refugees in the Middle East, Northeast Africa, India and Eastern Europe.

Relief United is dedicated to empowering teenagers and youths to become leaders and to support global causes in their local communities.

The seven founding members are Michal Kozlowski and Nick Sinopoli of Regis High School and Lily McHale, St. Vincent Ferrer High School, all of Manhattan; Joe Gullotta, John F. Kennedy Catholic High School, Somers; Michael Mauguin, Archbishop Stepinac High School, White Plains; Gibran Mourani of Iona Preparatory School and Jane Singman, The Ursuline School, both of New Rochelle.

Six of the seven are 2014 alumni of Transfiguration School in Tarrytown. Jane Singman is a graduate of Sleepy Hollow Middle School.

The new nonprofit has been working closely with the Sleepy Hollow Board of Trustees. Subsequently, an advisory group was created comprising an additional 30 high school students representing 10 other schools, to help share information on the mission of Relief United and the fund-raiser.

Admission to the festival is $15 at www.reliefunited.org or $20 at the door.

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