Monday, January 14, 2008

The Early Days- 2006 and Our Anniversary Celebration

2005 ended on a major high note and 2006 rolled in. We expanded to provide items for fire fighters to give to children and, based on feedback from participating departments, we expanded to offer coloring books and crayons for police and fire fighters to have on hand for children. I did as much public speaking as possible, usually at Rotary Clubs and I fundraised non stop. The grants came in, mostly small amounts, but it was enough to keep moving forward. It wasn't easy, but by the spring and summer of 2006, we had a rhythmn.

I went to work on our 2007 calendar, this time including fire fighters with their children. I worked on getting raffle prizes, this time without the panic from last year's debacle with the Patriots tickets. We started planning a small Anniversary Celebration at the office in October. The idea of an Anniversary Celebration at first seemed pretty funny- had we actually been around that long already? But the goal was to have a fundraising event that could turn into our annual signature event. We had a small silent auction, lots of food and drink, debuted the 2007calendar and invited everyone who was in the calendar and everyone I knew and my mom knew, to attend. I also invited John Fernandes, who at the time had just won a rather heated campaign for the democratic nomination for state Representative, unseating the incumbent. I called him, unsure if he would even show up. He showed up, along with 50 other people. Our profit was small, but it was a great event. Personally, I couldn't believe that so many people would show up to support my work.

The fall rolled along, no dramas, no disasters, just slow progress. Then early November came and I went to get my hair colored (I saw my first strand of white hair on my 17th birthday!). I sat under the dryer, waiting patiently, when my cell phone rang. It was my mom and she had news....

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