WASHINGTON – Former President Clinton joined his former rival Bob Dole Saturday in launching a nationwide effort to raise $100 million to make sure scholarships are available for children of people killed or disabled in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
"It seems to me this can be a living memorial, and they'll understand as they grow older ... that Americans continue to care," said Dole, a former senator and the 1996 GOP presidential candidate.
Clinton, a Democrat who defeated Dole in the presidential election, said the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund will be available to meet the educational needs of the children of the victims long after the news of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon pass from the headlines.
"This is a gift that will be giving for a long time," Clinton said at a news conference with Dole at Georgetown University. "Nothing is more important long term than to see that the children affected by this tragedy will have the opportunity to have an education."
Dole encouraged Americans to "keep on giving until it hurts, but in this case I don't think it will hurt."
The scholarship fund will be administered by the Citizens' Scholarship Foundation of America, a private scholarship and educational support organization.
Officials said 100 percent of the money contributed for victims' families will be made available for financially needy students. Those eligible include not only the children but also the spouses of those who died or were permanently disabled in the attacks or during rescue efforts.