06/03/2011 04:51AM ● Published by Style
Photo by Dante Fontana
When Shanley Knox was just 18 years old, she spent four weeks volunteering at an orphanage in Haiti with Three Angels Children’s Relief.
The experience changed her life. When she got back to the U.S., her stories inspired her parents to adopt eight-year-old Bethany, from the same orphanage where Knox had been a volunteer.
Now 22 and a recent college graduate, Knox is hard at work on a new project – helping AIDS-stricken women in Eastern Uganda. Through the Nakate Project (nakateproject.com), named after a 7-year-old African girl with AIDS, Knox and her business partner Emily Sheehy provide a global market for jewelry made by village women with AIDS. The proceeds go back to helping bolster the women’s businesses and sending their children to school. Although the project has forced Knox to put off her career in journalism, for her, the sacrifice is worth it. “I really believe that if you change one person’s life, that’s a big deal,” she explains. “Whenever I start getting discouraged, I get an email about the kids able to get to school because of [me]. That’s huge.”
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