We're officially official! // Spring 2018
BIG NEWS // SEEDS OF CARING IS AN OFFICIAL NONPROFIT!
Seeds of Caring is now officially a nonprofit organization, recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3). What does this mean? It means that our organization is held to high financial and operational standards--which we know is good for our participants, donors, partners, and the populations we aim to serve and benefit.
It also means we're ready to grow. And we need your help.
For nearly two years, Seeds of Caring has been waiting for this moment. As we've worked toward becoming "official" as a nonprofit, our all-volunteer staff has created service, social action, and community-building programming for your kids and others like them; developed an expert board of directors, a strong team of volunteer event leaders, and a solid organizational infrastructure; and taken the critical steps to make Seeds of Caring a sustainable effort today and long into the future. Now, we're ready to:
- Compensate a small staff to boldly take our charge forward and continue bringing high-quality, kindness-focused programming to your family.
- Develop customized service programs for community groups to expand our impact.
- Reach more kids with the potential to give back by taking programming to areas and populations for which there are currently barriers.
Here's how you can be part of it.
- Make a generous, tax-deductible donation here and make an immediate impact on Seeds of Caring's growth and success.
- Engage your personal network in supporting Seeds of Caring by doing any or all of the following. We can equip you with all the tools you need to do it successfully. Simply email Co-Executive Director Sarah Pirtle for instructions and materials.
- Run your own Facebook and/or direct email fundraiser on behalf of Seeds of Caring.
- Host an in-home fundraising party with family, friends, or colleagues.
- Engage your child in obtaining sponsorships for kindness and volunteer activities using our Sponsor-a-Kid-Who-Cares toolkit.
Questions? Ideas for helping Seeds of Caring gain critical funds for continued operation? Contact us!
FEATURE FAMILY // THE JAMES
For Lawrence and Diane James of Reynoldsburg, Seeds of Caring feels like an extension--a real-life application--of a philosophy they're already trying to live and pass down to their children.
In December 2017, the James family, including Maddox (10), Lillian (7), and Teagan (1), attended Seeds of Caring's holiday acts-of-kindness event and used toy drive benefiting residents of The Pearl House.
"We knew the event impacted the kids, because they talked about it for days afterward," Lawrence shares. "Maddox and Lillian were quick to distribute the compassion kits they made at the event to homeless individuals we encountered, and Maddox was really touched that the things he made with his own hands would make a person less fortunate feel a little better, a little more hopeful."
Lawrence, who works at Columbus State Community College and is passionate about public service, was inspired by these events to also join Seeds of Caring's Community Outreach Committee, providing thought leadership and hands-on help in spreading the word about the organization's mission and work.
"For me, Seeds of Caring is a conduit to reaching the community through the work of adults, but most especially kids," says Lawrence. "I want to make a difference that is engaging and centered around a variety of needs within the community."
Thank you, James family, for your meaningful contributions to Seeds of Caring!
If you'd like to be a feature family for the Seeds of Caring newsletter or special Facebook posts, email us with photos of your family engaged in Seeds of Caring activities, along with a short testimonial about the impact these experiences have had on your family.
MEET OUR PARTNER // SINGER-SONGWRITER JOANIE CALEM
If you've been to a Tunes & Togetherness event with Seeds of Caring, you know the marvelous Joanie Calem. Since our start in 2016 as a small community group, Joanie has volunteered her time and incredible talent every month to lead our families in music-making and community-building with local seniors and people with developmental disabilities.
Joanie says her motivation for partnering with Seeds of Caring is pretty simple: "I love the whole premise of Seeds of Caring: teaching children compassion, caring, and that no matter how young they are, they can give of themselves and people will appreciate that."
At her "day (and evening and weekend) job," Joanie teaches and performs music for people of all ages in our community and beyond. She takes her music and teaching talents into preschool classes, parties, libraries, and community organizations, and offers private lessons in guitar and piano. Her website includes a full list of of her upcoming community performances and other ways to connect with Joanie, including a weekly inter-generational singalong called Singing Through the Ages at The Forum.
For Joanie, the tie between her everyday work and her contributions to Seeds of Caring is seamless.
"I have always seen my work as community-building," Joanie says. "I love music and I love being able to share music, but more than anything I love using music to help build communities between people that might have a hard time connecting and might feel awkward. The music can create a bridge. When everyone is busy singing, dancing, and laughing at whatever silliness I have just thrown out, they feel more at ease and are more likely to be willing to reach out to someone new."
This is, in fact, the magic that Joanie brings to each and every Seeds of Caring event she leads us through: bridges and breakthroughs between community members who have much to learn from each other. We are grateful to have her in our midst--and on our team.
Catch the next Tunes & Togetherness event featuring Joanie by registering here.
RESOURCE CORNER // ENGAGING YOUR KIDS IN ENVIRONMENTALISM
Did you know? April 22 is Earth Day. This year, the Earth Day Network is focusing its program and messaging on ending plastic pollution.
Why? The Earth Day Network puts it like this: "From poisoning and injuring marine life to disrupting human hormones, from littering our beaches and landscapes to clogging our waste streams and landfills, the exponential growth of plastics is now threatening the survival of our planet."
If you'd like to involve your family in the effort to reduce plastic use, check out this awesome Plastic Pollution Primer and Action Toolkit from the Earth Day Network, which includes guidance for creating your own personal plastic reduction plan.
Also access these helpful resources for engaging your kids in being more earth-friendly residents of our planet.
- 8 Interactive Ways to Teach Your Kids about Earth Day
- Tips for Protecting our Planet from National Geographic
- Top Children's Books About the Environment
Last but not least, please join Seeds of Caring for our Earth Day for Kids event or Environmentalism for Kids: Film-Viewing, Gardening & More. We'll be breaking down key concepts about environmentalism so they make sense for and resonate with kids--and we'll be having lots of fun while we're doing it.
DON'T MISS THIS // UPCOMING EVENTS
We have a busy, fun, and meaningful spring lined up with lots of opportunities for your family to dig in to service, social action, and community-building together. Learn more about our upcoming events via the links below, and remember to check back on our Eventbrite registration page on the 1st and 15th of each month for new events just posted.
Welcome Kits for Homeless Families: April 2, 6 pm
Meals on Wheels Training: April 9, 5:30 pm
Sack Lunches for The Open Shelter: April 10, 3:30 pm
Meals on Wheels Training: April 13, 12 pm
Baking for Ronald McDonald House: April 15, 1 pm
Tunes & Togetherness with Goodwill: April 17, 9:30 am
Earth Day for Kids: April 21, 1 pm
Environmentalism for Kids: April 28, 3 pm
Book Sorting for Books for Bedtime: April 29, 1 pm
With any questions or comments about the content of this newsletter, please contact Seeds of Caring Co-Executive Director, Sarah Pirtle, at firstname.lastname@example.org.