Saturday, June 26, 2010

Remembering Why We Donate

Hey everyone!  I'm still on vacation, but as the 29th gets closer and closer, I get more excited.  For those of you who haven't heard, we are hosting a party.  We rented out a HUGE theater in Orem, Utah, and are selling tickets to the MIDNIGHT showing of the newest Twilight film:  Eclipse.  We are selling the tickets for $30.  For your money, you get your movie ticket (about $9 value), a $5 gift card to concessions, and a thank you gift.  You also get a chance to win one of our fabulous door prizes (keep reading....there will be sneak peaks of some of them later on in this post).  The rest of the $30 goes to the two charities we are trying to raise money for, which is around $16. 

Why am I telling you all this?  Because I have met with a lot of the following when trying to sell tickets:

"Why do I have to pay $30 to come see the movie when I could just pay $14? What's the big deal?"


"Well if it wasn't so expensive of a party to come to, then I would come, but it's not worth it to spend $30."

And my personal favorite:

"Well we didn't win anything last time we went to one of your fundraiser parties.  If you could guarantee me a prize then I'd donate and go."

So might I gently remind people that it is not just a party?  We are raising money for charities.  One of these charities does not have a steady flow of income.

Here is a little more about the charities.  (If you're waiting for the prize sneak peeks, keep reading.  They're coming, I promise!)

Colton Ray Stewart passed away in 2008.  He was a great kid.  He had his life planned out.  Later in 2008, as a way to deal with everything and keep moving forward, a group of us got together and formed Colton's Angels.  We decided that we would focus on making items for the hospital that took care of Colton while he was sick. 

We have made and donated tons of things:  stuffed animals for the ER and pediatrics, coloring kits for the kids in pediatrics, activity books for the ER, blankets for the kids in pediatrics, and "Survival" kits for the families in the ICU waiting room.  We are currently putting together newborn kits for families who have nothing to dress their baby in to take him/her home.  We are also working on making blankets for Fetal Demise.

We gave away our second annual Colton Ray Stewart scholarship this year to a graduating senior who had the desire to pursue a career in mechanics, and was heading to mechanics school.

We plan on participating again in the Festival of Trees.  Last year our tree was "Our Guitar Hero" and was purchased by a family who donated it to the local Ronald McDonald House. 

While we have a small, steady source of money coming in (we meet every month, and each member in attendance pays "dues"), some things we do cost more money (like the Festival of Trees, where 100% of the proceeds go directly to Primary Children's Hospital, another hospital close to our hearts).

These are some of the children at the Borto-Deseret Orphanage in Liberia.  There are about 40 children who live in this orphanage and school.  They cannot be adopted.

These kids have really, only the most basic of needs:  food, clothing, shelter, and medicine for malaria.

The above pictures are of when the children were given chairs to sit on while they learn.

These kids don't have a lot.  What money gets sent to the orphanage goes mainly toward food and medicine.

So, why all this?

Because sometimes it helps to remember why we are doing this.  Why we are having this huge party and charging a little more money than you'd normally spend to go and see it.  We are trying to make a difference in these kids lives, and in the lives of others. 

We received an email last month from someone whose child received one of our items at the hospital.  Their child had needed to go to the ER for an injury, and received one of the small stuffed animals we had donated.  The parents were so grateful for that, because it made the hospital visit easier (for parents and child).

In contrast:  I had to take my son to the ER a few years ago, in an ambulance, because he had had several seizures.  He couldn't breathe, and had to be put on oxygen during the ambulance ride.  I was so freaked out and scattered that I grabbed the diaper bag, full of diapers and wipes, but no blanket, no puppy, no bottle.  Nothing to comfort him.  The several hours we spent in the ER would have been infinitely easier had we had something he could snuggle with, besides Mommy, that would comfort him just a little. 

How many parents experience that daily?  How many parents, children, families would have an easier time, and less traumatizing experience at the hospital with just a small comfort item?  That is why we do what we do. 

It doesn't matter what you do to help change the world, as long as you try.  The smallest act of kindness can touch someone's life.  By purchasing a ticket to our Eclipse party, that is what you are doing.  You are guaranteed to help someone, somewhere, whether here in our community, or at the orphanage in Africa.

Sometimes we get a little selfish and think "What's in it for me?"  All we ask is that during this party you ask "What can my donation do to help?"  and that you see all the good we have done, and will do, to help people in need.

Now, as promised, the sneak peek of some of the items up for door prizes.  Please note:  You only get a chance to enter if you purchase the $30 ticket and submit your name at the movie. 

Above you will see two charms.  One is an "E" and one is a "J".  These will be available for purchase.  One charm for $3, or two for $5.  You might buy both if, like me, you can't decide who you like better until Breaking Dawn comes around. 

We will have several really cute key fobs up for prizes that have the charms in them, but they weren't finished when I left town.  The charms are available at Sweetbriar Cove, and you can purchase them when you pick up your tickets.  Just let them know you want to purchase one, or two, or doesn't matter! :D
This is the necklace that everyone who buys the ticket will receive.  It's on a simple black cording, and the front face is covered with diamond-like jewels.  It will come in a black or red drawstring bag.

The quilt, seen above, is one of several that have been donated for door prizes.  I am, myself, donating a quilt, but it's not done yet (it will be ready by the movie, I promise!), so pictures will come later. 

Also, we have t-shirts, games, and other fun stuff that has been donated by several different people.

Please, if you haven't already bought a ticket, consider purchasing one from us and helping out these two really great charities that need your help.

For tickets, please call Sweetbriar Cove at 801-423-1876.  You can email Colton's Angels at if you have any questions, or if you would prefer to reserve your tickets that way.  Tickets must be picked up and paid for by close of business on the 29th.

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