BENTON STEPHENS: Boys and Girls Club named semifinalist in Mercedes Benz Community Stars Contest

Thursday, October 13, 2011 | 4:45 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — The Boys and Girls Club of Columbia is a semifinalist in the Mercedes-Benz Community Stars Contest.

If the Boys and Girls Club wins, the organization will receive $25,000. Director Valorie Livingston said it will be used to refurbish a school bus.

The club serves 150 children from low-income families and has a waiting list, so transportation is a challenge.

"Our service to our community is to be able to provide a place to kids after school that's safe," Livingston said. "Our community needs this service; our school need this service; and, in order to provide this service, we need to be able to get the kids there."

People can vote for the Boys and Girls Club on the Mercedes-Benz Community Stars Facebook page. Each person can vote once everyday until 5 p.m. Oct. 21. Five winners will be announced Oct. 24. 

Mercedes-Benz dealers will donate $125,000 to the charities that win the contest.

Contestants submitted 60-second videos to highlight their organizations and describe how the funds awarded could forward their cause.

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