It’s been four years since Verona learned about Zoey Penny and the rapid aging disease that changed her young life. But while other fundraisers have faded, efforts to fund the fight against progeria are still going strong.
Earlier this summer, three sisters–Georgeanne, Marguerite and Veronica Valera–and their friend Sophia Villani held a sale in the Valera’s front yard of loom bracelets and pot holders they had made to raise money for Team Zoey. “They chose Team Zoey by themselves,” says dad Rich Valera, “and then pursued sales with surprising enthusiasm; persisting after multiple hours in the hot sun towards their ambitious goal of $200, which they fell a bit short of.” The girls ended up raising $170, all of which has been donated to Team Zoey, the non-profit that channels money to the Progeria Research Foundation.
“Needless to say, as the parent of three of the girls,” says Rich Valera, “I was proud of how hard they worked for something that was only going to benefit them in the satisfaction they would get from helping others.”