Over the years… starting as a young child selling hand made pot holders door-to-door so I’d have money to buy Christmas presents for my family, I’ve been involved in many fund raising activities.
In high school, I was a member of the Key Club (a junior Kiwanis club) and distributed local phone directories in exchange for donations. I also helped sell Christmas trees to raise money for our charitable pursuits.
During my college years, I volunteered as a tutor at the local high school, but my fund raising activities were focused on paying my tuition, room and board, and occasional glass of beer.
After college, I got involved with the LIONS club and sold brooms, light bulbs, fruitcakes, pancake breakfast tickets, and raffle tickets among other items.
At church, I’ve been involved with yard sales, Irish dinners, auctions, and numerous other fund raising efforts.
Is it any wonder that somehow I got snookered into being the Fund Raising chair of our local Family Promise affiliate? Family Promise is an organization whose mission it is to help homeless children and their parents get back into a home of their own. For more information on Family Promise, I invite you to visit the Family Promise web site.
My past endeavors were small potatoes compared with my current challenges. In the past, the most money raised by any of the things I worked with was a few thousand dollars. Now I’m faced with raising at least $50,000 to get the program started and then meeting an annual budget of over $125,000.
Our fund raising committee has started a number of things to get that money flowing. We have Club 180 which encourages donors to help turn a life around (180 degrees) by pledging and donating $180 per year. We’ve also placed donation canisters in many local businesses. (One of those canisters was stolen. It probably contained less than $20 at the time. It’s sad that people would steal from charities, but maybe they needed the money more than our homeless children. Another story for another time!)
In less than a month we will hold our first major fund raising event. It will be Bed Race & Festival. On November 7th, we’ll welcome local citizens at 9:00 AM at Forsyth Central High School where they can visit at least 14 booths selling various items, have their child’s face painted, or let their child create a work of art that will be donated to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta for another fund raising event.
The bed races will begin around 10:00 AM. Each team will compete in two heats and their time will be recorded. The two teams with the fastest combined times will then compete in the finals at noon.
While there will be a trophy for the team with the fastest bed, the big prize – the coveted Brass Bed award – will go to the team that raises the most money for Family Promise.
In case you’re wondering why I bring this up…
As of last night, my friends and family have donated almost $900 to Family Promise in support of my bed entry. I’ve given my bed the title of “First Day of Retirement” and it will be pushed by a group of retired senior citizens. Our goal is to prove that old age and treachery can defeat youth and enthusiasm any day of the year. If you like that thought (regardless of your age) I’d appreciate your demonstration of support… in terms of dollars donated to Family Promise.
You can make a donation to my bed or any of my competitors by going to our local local Family Promise Bed Race page.
Obviously I feel very strongly about Family Promise. Forsyth County, Georgia is one of the wealthiest areas in the country and yet, as of this past Thursday (October 8th) there were three hundred forty-three children considered homeless since the beginning of the current school year. A child is considered homeless if he or she is living with friends or relatives, living in an extended stay motel, living in a tent or camping trailer, or living in the family car.
You can also help the cause by buying any of my e-books that are available for your Kindle or Nook. I’ve stated that I will donate half of my royalties to Family Promise. If need be, I’ll give it all to Family Promise.
Pure and simple, I cannot do this alone. I need all my friends, family, readers, casual acquaintances, and everyone else to chip in. We have almost 200,000 people living in Forsyth County. If I could find a way to obtain at least $1.00 from each of them, we’d have the money problem solved. Sadly, I have yet to figure out how to do that. So, I’m reaching out to everyone I can think of.
I already received backing from a friend in London, England. Let’s see if we can get donations from other parts of the world!
Please spread the word! Thank you kindly.