Our new “Shower To The People” one-to-one sponsorship program is off and running, with donors signed up to sponsor families with monthly personal care items in seven of our recipient communities. We’re excited to be organizing and facilitating a second bulk donation of thousands of personal care products from High Ridge Brands, the makers of Zest, Coast, Alberto VO5, White Rain and Rave, which will be delivered in June to 20 nonprofit organizations around the U.S. that serve an impoverished population. Each community will receive a pallet (5 feet by 5 feet!) of soap, shampoo, body wash and conditioner to give out to some of our nation’s poorest and most vulnerable families.
The October numbers for donated grocery items are starting to come in for our Kids Can! participating schools…. Over 2,600 cans and other items were collected by students at Liberty Elementary School in Canton, Georgia for the MUST Ministries Food Pantry…1,003 cans donated by 4th and 5th graders at Springhurst Elementary School in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. for the South Presbyterian Church food pantry… 498 cans by the kids at Hillside School in Hastings on Hudson, N.Y. for the Hastings food pantry. That’s over 4,100 food and personal care items from just 3 schools!!!!
A big thank you to our generous donors who have helped so many children start the school year off with the supplies they need. Welch’s employees donated and assembled 150 gorgeous backpacks jam packed with supplies for 150 kids in need in Massachusetts… and contributions over the last few weeks have made it possible for us to send hundreds of backpacks to children in Orlando, Fl. and Montrose, Ak., as well as $900 worth of supplies — including notebooks, paper, pencils, pens, crayons, glue sticks, folders and more… to families in Mingo County, West Virginia.
A U.S. Army soldier stationed in Kandahar (Afghanistan) contacted us a few months ago with a wonderful idea… His unit was nearing the end of their deployment, and had loads of unused personal care items and books that had been shipped to them by well wishers back home. With a mind to making sure it all didn’t all go to waste, he offered to ship everything (at his own expense) to the communities and families we help. The results have been amazing… As of August 13th he had sent 47 boxes of supplies and gently used books to our Thoreau, New Mexico, and Montrose, Arkansas communities… with more on the way to our partner in Lemmon, South Dakota.
Included were electric fans, new socks, hand warmers, all sorts of personal hygiene items including toothbrushes and toothpaste… and books galore!
We’re happy to join forces with ECHOage — an online children’s birthday party gift-giving alternative — and support their efforts to bring the spirit of empathy and giving to a child’s special day. Through ECHOage, children donate to a charity of their choice as part of their birthday celebration.
A truly memorable “One Book At A Time” moment….. Earlier this month two of our One Book pen pals had the opportunity to meet… in person! During a family vacation to Hawaii, donor Alison M. and her daughter Ruby stopped off at the Boys & Girls Club of Hawaii and met their One Book recipient, 9 year old Chantel. Chantel and her mother greeted the visitors with gifts of leis, and the two girls, who’ve been writing to each other for a year, chatted away. One Book At A Time continues to grow… To date we’ve linked 188 children living in poverty with 188 sponsors.