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Former hostage held in Somalia helps girl who survived attack

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

A freelance journalist who was kidnapped in Somalia has joined the growing list of Canadians stepping forward to help out a Manitoba girl who survived a vicious attack of her own.

Amanda Lindhout issued a plea on Facebook recently asking for donations of Air Miles to help Rinelle Harper and her mother get to St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, N.S., to meet with officials about the possibility of a scholarship. The teenager was left to die beside a river in Winnipeg after a brutal assault last year, but survived and continues to recover, occasionally speaking out publicly about her ordeal.

Last month, her family's home on the Garden Hill First Nation burned to the ground, prompting an online Go-Fund-Me campaign that raised more than $16,000 to help the girl and her family.

Lindhout, who was held hostage for more than a year in Somalia and has written a book about her ordeal, first connected with the Harper family earlier this summer and posted her Air Miles plea on the weekend.


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