The darkest time in my life started in elementary school when my dad was diagnosed with a terminal illness. That darkness continued for years as he fought his hardest against brain cancer and eventually succumbed to it the summer before I started high school.
Horrible does not even nick the surface as a way to describe that time. To be a happy-go-lucky kid one day and suddenly have the rug swept out from under your feet and your every notion of security destroyed the next is earth shattering. And I don’t even want to imagine what it feels like as a parent to watch your children experience something like that.
Still, as I mentioned earlier this week, there were people who went out of their way to bring lightness into our lives. Whether it was perfect strangers delivering toys, old friends and coworkers getting me into the Rangers locker room to meet my Crush of All Crushes or relatives taking the time to do special things with and for us, there were people who gave us a glimmer of hope that the world was not as horrible as it seemed.
These experiences are part of the reason I’ve decided to throw a big, fat fundraiser for women and children who are at some of their lowest points this holiday season. Tired of talking about doing good things and wanting to actually make good things happen, I decided a few months ago that I wanted to work on a project to empower women and children. I want to spread that same glimmer of hope my brothers and sister and I felt when people did nice things for us.
After a little research and a talk with a social worker friend (Hi Meg!), I decided the families involved with Hope’s Door, an organization that shelters and assists victims of domestic violence, are in need of exactly the type of hope and encouragement I’d like to spread.
Here’s how you can help (no matter where in the world you live or how much money you have in your bank account):
Local Westchester people can cometo our favorite frozen yogurt place on Saturday, December 13th and donate one of the items listed in the image below. In addition, a portion of the proceeds made that day will be donated to Hope’s Door as will any of the money raised from the raffle we’re having. Also, if you bring your kids along, they can help make friendship bracelets for the kids!
If you’re not local or you can’t make it that day, you can make a donation via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org. All of the money received will go to filling in any items needed that we don’t receive during the fundraiser.
If you own a small business, you can help by donating your goods or services to be raffled off—we’ve got some great prizes promised already and I’ll be sharing them all on social media as I get them in. Make sure to check out the hashtag #helpdeliverhope for updates!
If you’re a blogger or if you don’t have any extra funds this holiday season you can help by spreading the word! Share this post on social media or, if you’re local, print this flier and help spread the word around town.
A bunch of seemingly small acts lead to big things. If each of you could help make a difference in these families lives by helping out in even one of the ways listed here, this fundraiser will be an incredible success—and these families will benefit in ways that you can’t even imagine.