Jumping Into Summer MAD
The MAD Programs continue as we get ready for summer. Just in the last month, there have been some amazing updates donny.com would like to share from our MAD participants of 2012.
—Annette Hello Donny, Making a Difference for Seniors–Since last month we’ve been able to get the word out to about 12,000 VA Dept. of Social Services (VDSS)workers about my project. The VDSS Public Affairs office heard about it and wrote an article for the agency’s monthly newsletter. That generated interest from a few people who have volunteered to get their churches involved in collecting items needed by the seniors in home-based care. I was also contacted by someone who is going to try to set up a radio interview about my project.
The main focus of this month and next month is to raise money and/or collect items for the “Storm Survival Kits for Seniors.” I completed research on the types of items needed and posted them on my church’s website and we’ve begun receiving a few items. During the last week in May our state does not make people pay sales taxes for storm preparation items so that’s when I plan to hit the stores with the donations we’ve raised. Our goal is to try to create 20-25 kits for the seniors in home-based care in Charles City County, VA by the end of June.
—Melody As President of the Married Couples Ministry of Maple Springs Baptist Church, it is my vision and goal to promote marriage through the interaction with and support of our youth and young adults. Most of our youth are from borken homes and most of our young adults are the single parents to the youth. We need to set the example! My grandchildren are the product of a one-parent home. Sad to say that my son left and doesn’t maintain contact. Thankfully, the Lord has blessed us and my husband and I spend as much time with our grandchildren as we can so that they can see the positive role models of a “couple”. In April we had our annual Retreat. The Ministry was blessed to have 25 couples in attendance and were even able to pass the blessing forward by offering a struggling, newlywed couple with a free weekend. Because we believe, you are what you surround yourself with, our marriage is made stronger by surrounding ourselves with other strong marriages. We are in the process of arranging a scavenger hunt with our youth in downtown D.C.; we are challenging the young adults to a night of bowling and we will be hosting a Thanksgiving Dinner for our Seniors during the holidays. We will be putting together some fund raising activities to defray some of the costs of these events; as well as being able to provide our youth or young adults with small financial needs.
—Gayle Hi Donny,
I just got back from a month away and I was stunned to find $5,740 more dollars from family and friends. I am now up to $8,560 dollars and I am just getting revved up. If there is anyone out there who wants to contribute, I have set up an email just for you, firstname.lastname@example.org. I hope every one else is finding this as rewarding as I am. I am gearing up to go to my favorite restaurants to ask for help as well as some other businesses here in town. I still have other ideas up my sleeve and still have plenty of time to accomplish it. Thanks for all the support.
—Barabara and Lesa Hello Donny!
Here is an update on Joining the Generations:
We have submitted inquiries to all 50 state education department to determine how to send elderly volunteers into the schools without being submitted to background checks, etc. as other non-parent volunteers would. As a teacher, Lesa feels this will not be an issue as long as the elder volunteer stays in the classroom with a district employee.
We have made a flyer that will be sent to day care centers around the country this summer and to school districts this fall. We have attached that flyer so it can be put on donny.com as well with this update please.
We are currently making a Youtube video to link to our Facebook page showing young children and elders reading together.
We are also contacting organizations for the elderly and other grant organizations such as donorschoose.org for help with transportation costs.
We have received good feedback so far and are looking forward to seeing this in place in the next few weeks!
Thanks again for this incredible opportunity,
Barbara and Lesa
—Michelle Dear Donny,
Well, here is the latest news! This is our summer update on what’s happening at Brown Bags filled with Love and Hope for Kids and Pets.
Let’s start with the exciting news from our Brown Bags filled with Love and Hope for Kids. This summer is the annual BBQ event in June, July, and August which will be held at a local elementary school. This annual BBQ event is sponsored to feed some of the local school children and their families. They will enjoy hamburgers, hot dogs, fruit, salads, and ice cream. Families can also take home, and enjoy a family style Brown Bag that provides approximately four meals for the entire family. This event provides fun for the kids and family enjoyment. I’m sure that all these families will be looking forward to a good time thanks to all the community volunteers. As the event moves forward I will continue to post updates about the summer BBQ fun. June will be the last month for passing out sack lunches since the school year is ending soon. The Brown Bags program will then start back up again in September when school resumes.
Next is our update on Brown Bags filled with Love and Hope for Pets. This month in June we will be having a small play date for the dogs, along with a sale on donated items to raise money for the dog rescue. Also, a BBQ picnic is scheduled for the volunteers who foster, provide medical care, rescue, and help these animals. Hopefully, we will raise another $300-$500 to support the cause. Coming soon, will be the annual online auction in late summer. Right now, we are collecting items to be donated. Usually, this online auction lasts 8 weeks and makes $20k-$30k, and is the biggest event of the year. More information will follow as we get closer to the event and it is launched. Remember you can donate here at this website a 501c(3) and scroll down.
Please continue to look for updates from Brown Bags filled with Love and Hope for Kids and Pets!
—Laurie “A Childs Chance to Play” May Update May was a very busy month for “A Childs Chance to Play”!
Activities this past month were:
- Meetings with one school principal, and another meeting set up for the first week of June to discuss donation needs for these two schools to discuss equipment needs.
- “A Childs Chance to Play” made its’ first monetary donation to support a child, giving her the ability to join a team (otherwise she could not have afforded to do) and be able to play this summer!
- “A Childs Chance to Play” is also covering the costs of raffle tickets to be printed for a city youth soccer league fundraiser (to help them in their effort to raise funds).
- Yard Sale – I had a yard sale to help raise funds for the printing costs of the M.A.D. cookbook that I am creating to sell as a fundraiser for “A Childs Chance to Play”. This one day event raised $725.00 which will go a long way in offsetting the printing costs of the cookbook .
- To date, I currently have over 450 recipes that I have received from fans, friends and family for the M.A.D cookbook!! Needless to say, this has been a HUGE project and have been very busy editing, formatting and setting up the recipes into a template for printing. My goal is to have the book printed by mid-June. A very special “Thank You” to all who took time to contribute a recipe and help support this cause!!
—Jennifer Hi Donny!
And hello to everyone else MAD for PRISM!!!!
Well it’s certainly been a whirlwind and never a dull moment but I am proud to say that PRISM is gaining momentum and happy to announce that we have reestablished our relationship ship with The Miracle League, a huge support and steppingstone for our organization. With their help and with the support of the community we are launching our summer program!! The program will begin June 4th and we are set to run 5 days a week for 8 weeks.
As you know, we are a startup (and much needed) program, with a lot of growth ahead. We are thrilled that we have begun to reach many families and that they are equally as thrilled and have reached out to us. We’ve so far signed up 12 -15 special needs young adults for the summer. As we’ve stated, all of these young people for whom PRISM has been established, have a variety of, AND many levels of needs and challenges, be it autism, asperger, down syndrome, learning and developmental disabilities, etc. Our summer program is going to focus on growth in the areas of life skills and independence.
Several local businesses are opening their doors allowing our young people to come and practice many areas of on the job training while developing self esteem in the process. We are also communicating with animal shelters, senior centers, etc. so that these amazing young people can also serve their community in areas in which they can thrive and connect.
We’ll also have many fun activities including physical fitness, cooking, art, swimming and other classes as well as visits to sporting events and other local venues.
We are so thankful to the volunteers and families who will be helping with all of these activities, including transportation.
We still have a long road ahead of us and fundraising will play a big part. Thanks to Donny and the MAD program, we’ve gotten off to a good start and have put those funds to good use. We will contine to announce fundraising efforts and all other upcoming PRISM events.
Please remember, all of our special needs children DO grow up and need to find their place in the world like the rest of us. They have so much potential to succeed and so much to teach and give and we MUST do the same for them.
On behalf of myself, Marilynn, Kim and the PRISM team, THANK YOU!!!
—Kelly MAD Doggie In The Window
After returning from the cruise, I began my new journey to help the dogs imprisoned in puppy mills. Believing that I knew everything there was to know about commercial dog breeding, I had visions of walking into these mills, scooping the dogs up, and bringing them back home to safety. How very wrong I was. I have since found myself in a world that I had never imagined existed; and have learned of horrible, inhumane acts that an unknowing person like myself would think only existed on TV or in the movies. Spending time in “this world”, fighting for the rights and lives of these dogs has proven to be confusing, overwhelming, depressing, and honestly; there have been days when I felt I did not have what it took to be dragged into that world. Thankfully, with the help of my family and the encouragement from so many wonderful people that I have networked with who have been involved in this fight for years, I have learned that in order to truly have an impact, I must experience the heartache that goes along with it. Most importantly, I have discovered that I do have what it takes. I believe that we all do.
DITW’s Recent Activity
- We have been distributing informative brochures to veterinarian offices, groomers, and pet supply stores across the Upstate of South Carolina. These brochures were designed to inform the public about puppy mills and the inhumane treatment that the breeding dogs suffer, with a reminder that while the puppy that they purchased may be safe and healthy right now, his/her mother is not.
- We are very close to being able to fulfill our commitment to our local shelter of sponsoring a billboard that encourages spaying and neutering of our companion animals.
- We continue to receive donations from local businesses and individuals of new pet related items that we are reselling on EBay. This has been a very successful fundraiser and one that we hope will continue and grow.
- DITW will be hosting a community yard sale later this summer and we have been collecting and storing donations for this sale. We are very excited with the support from the community on this endeavor and I am happy to say that because of the remarkable donations received to this point, our family can no longer park our cars in our garage!!
- After researching and speaking with countless individuals and organizations that play an active role in the actual “hands on” rescue of puppy mill dogs, we have chosen two of these organizations to align ourselves with and donate all funds that we raise to. One is a national organization who is involved in not only the hands-on rescue aspect, but also very involved in the legislative process required to shut down puppy mills once and for all. The second organization is a very small rescue group from Wisconsin who literally does what I had only imagined doing – they make their way into puppy mills and dog auctions and rescue the dogs that the breeders find no longer profitable, and would otherwise kill. Once home, these dogs usually face astronomical medical bills because of the horrific conditions they lived in and the nonexistent medical care they had received to that point. Once healthy, the dogs are fostered out with loving foster parents until a permanent, forever home can be found. Money is always an issue with small organizations such as this, as they can only rescue as many dogs as they can afford, so it will be a great honor to donate our funds to this organization. I will have more information and photos of these organizations with my next update.
—Cathy Life Unexpected continues to add content to the web site at http://www.lifeunexpected.info. An interactive calendar is being developed to allow easier listing of fundraising and events. We recently added a Gather.com account too at http://lifeunexpected.gather.com.
This month’s monetary charitable support was given to HOPE, LOVE, MUSIC, which supports The City of Hope a global research and treatment facility focusing on cancer, diabetes and HIV/AIDS. Any of these unexpected health events can strike any of us our family and friends at any time. By supporting this research effort, it it hoped that a cure for these diseases will be found. The Facebook page was able to promote this event and funds donated by texting “GIVEHOPE” to 27222.
The other recent major event was the Patriot Half Marathon on Memorial Day May 28th in Rockwall, Texas supporting the Cancer has Cancer organization.
The intent of Life Unexpected is for people sharing information with others who might benefit from their experiences and so far it is working. As the information spreads, we hope to make a difference in people’s lives by supporting each other and giving hope and help to those in need.
—Linda MAD About Bullying
I have been busy researching many different venues for my MAD About Bullying project.
I have just completed training in the “Fun Friends” program in Ottawa. This evidence based research helps children to deal with their emotions and anger. It also assists children to develop life skills to cope with difficult situations, like bullying. Children are taught how to relax and to understand emotions of self and others. They also learn social and emotional skills, make friends, share and learn how to deal with conflict.
I have been in contact with several people regarding presenting programs to young children (2-6 years of age). Early intervention is very important. Talking about feelings of self and others, empathy and caring are topics that are discussed daily in my groups. There is a lot of interest from many different organizations to gather on a regular basis to talk to children in preschool or Kindergarten settings. Though I will be presenting the skills from this workshop to Kindergarten age children over the summer, the main part of this project will start up in September once school commences.
I have been in contact with www.stopabully.ca and we will be discussing my project in more detail in July.
Please visit my Face book sight www.facebook.com/MadAboutBullying
LET’S GET MAD ABOUT BULLYING