Friday, May 13, 2011

The Ask

My father used to say about his mother, who was a Republican National Committeewoman for years in Arkansas (and who tirelessly worked to get women out to vote), that you never wanted to start a conversation with her, because she would corner you and start asking for money for the Republican Party. I have a feeling my friends and family may be feeling the same way about me!

In my role as President of PH, I certainly have my hand out a lot. And here I am again, touting the golf tournament and auction, asking each of you to dig deep in support of our teens. Asking never gets easier for me. I get the “willies” just like anyone else when it comes to asking folks I know for money. BUT, and it is a very big but, the cause for which I am asking is SO critical and SO important to the future, not only of the teens we serve, but of our community, our state, our nation, that it overrides the fear.

So I am asking. I’m asking my board members, my staff, my friends, my colleagues, my neighbors. I’m asking that you sponsor the tournament. I’m asking that you give us names of potential sponsors. I’m asking that you bid on the auction. I’m asking that you secure auction items for us to add to the auction. I’m asking, and I’m offering you the opportunity to save a teen’s life, to give him hope for a bright future, to help her become a productive and independent citizen of our community.

I’m asking and I’m going to keep on asking. I’ll try not to corner you, however.

Have a great weekend. It’s supposed to be beautiful!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Inspiration Amidst Trial and Tribulation

Amidst all the tribulations of budget cuts, program cuts, outrageous bills being passed, and general dismal news, there are still great and inspirational things happening every day in the non-profit world, facilitated by incredible people. Promise House was recently on the receiving end of one such event.

There is a group in Dallas called The Real Estate Council (TREC), whose members are not only realtors, but other folks that support the industry i.e. attorneys, architects, electrical contractors, etc. Within the group is an Associate Leadership Class, made up of young, promising men and women in the profession. Every year, this class takes on a BIG capital project for a non-profit, and THIS year, Promise House was their beneficiary.

What they did was totally amazing. Our proposal to them was to build a 2,000 square foot storage facility in which to house donations for all of our programs. Well, when they got to Promise House and saw that ½ of the upstairs in our main building was still not finished out, they decided the storage building was not enough, and that they wanted to finish out half of that space as well, for us to use for our teens.

SOOOO, not only did they build our 2,000 square foot storage facility (and build side-walks, plant grass and flowers, and clean up the play area), they TOTALLY created and finished out two rooms upstairs, one for a “store” for our clients and the other (very large) for a multipurpose room for our teens. They erected walls, sheet-rocked and painted, put in HVAC, lighting, carpet, and whatever else was needed to get us green-tagged by the city. Their contribution to PH ended up being well over $100,000.

AND at the dedication ceremony last week, THEY thanked US for being able to do the project for PH! How cool is that??

We have always loved our volunteers, and this project is a very big reason why. Promise House could not do what we do without the help of passionate, committed, creative, and talented volunteers.

I know each of you has similar inspirational stories to tell. I would love to hear them!