Thursday, September 24, 2015

House of Hope Summary (Spring 2015)

Most recently, over the winter and spring of 2015, we raised money for House of Hope in Lowell, MA.

House of Hope is an organization that provides mothers and their children with shelter and tries to help get their life back on track. Most of the women have substance abuse issues and/or mental challenges. To accomplish this they provide childcare, case managers to help plan their future, health services, help with their mental or substance problems, and employment internship positions. Not only was this meaningful cause so inspiring and close to home, but we also got the wonderful opportunity to volunteer with the kids three Wednesday's for a couple of hours after we had finished our fundraising in May. At the end of a long day of the mothers looking for work we were able to give them a break by interacting and playing with their children. At House of Hope we met kids of all different backgrounds, but they all had one thing in common; they wanted to have a good time. Although some of these kids spoke languages other than english it didn't change their appreciation for us there. We saw some of the same kids each week and, although only three times, we felt like we really got to know them and be empathetic towards there situations. It was such a powerful experience so see who our money was going towards and to really understand how much of a difference it would make for these people.

In order to raise the money for these families at House of Hope we held a Valentine's camp, sold homemade crafts, and collected donations. The Valentines camp was once again aimed towards the younger age group of kindergarteners, first graders, and second graders and proved to be a huge success. We set up a mini "fair" full of booths with different fun themed activities and games. They were able to go around and use their tickets we gave out to enjoy these fun booths. Not only were we able to run another fun camp and inform them of House of Hope, but we were also able to promote aspects of a person that we strongly believe in; such as optimism, encouragement, and sharing. It was great to see such a young group of kids sharing a ticket when a friend was low and cheering each other on to success in the games. Along with the camp we did a craft sale, where we sold homemade pumpkin granola, handmade stationery, and handmade dishtowels. Although a lot of work to make over 300 individual stationery cards, almost 60 printed dish towels, and multiple batches of granola, we had a great time making all of these products together and delivering them to all the kind people who helped us out in this fundraiser. All in all, through the camp and big craft sale we were able to donate over $830 to House of Hope. 

As always, thank you for your support as there is no better feeling than seeing these problems and being part of the solution.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Project C.U.R.E. Summary (Fall 2014)

We are four girls (Olivia Coutre, Emma Duggan, Grace Jennings, and Sarah Reichheld) known as the Giving Gals who fundraise and volunteer to make a difference for those in unjust situations. This is a summary of a great cause we helped out last fall during our 8th grade year. (Fall 2014)

Project C.U.R.E. or Commission on Urgent Relief and Equipment donates medical supplies and equipment to countries around the world. Project C.U.R.E., founded in 1987, has small collection centers where donated medical supplies are then delivered to larger distribution warehouses. Project C.U.R.E. has helped out patients and families throughout 130 countries all over the world. Not only do they ship out 2-3 cargo containers of supplies a week around the world, but they also work with many volunteers to empower doctors and nurses, deliver vaccines, and help perform surgeries. Project C.U.R.E.'s mission is to deliver and continue to deliver health and hope throughout the world.

In order to help Project C.U.R.E., we held two major camps. This included a Halloween camp with many fun and easy halloween crafts, a scavenger hunt with clues forming a skeleton, joke telling, ghost in the graveyard, and many more spooky games and activities! This camp was attended by over 12 kids in kindergarten, first, and second grades and helped us to raise over $230. Along with the Halloween camp, we held a fall themed camp on Veteran's Day. At this camp each kid baked a mini apple crisp, did many leaf and turkey crafts, a team bonding scavenger hunt with pieces to form a leaf with trees, and many other fun games. It was a great time for a group of over 10 kids to honor our veterans and support those with medical needs by raising almost $200.  Our overall goal of both camps was to inform them on Project C.U.R.E. and the problems people were facing around the world while educating them on how they could make their difference. Along with this, we made it a priority to provide a fun afternoon for them with old and new friends.

During Project C.U.R.E. we made it a major goal of ours to not only raise money for causes we believed in, but also to spread awareness of how we can all make change. The camps were a great way to educate kids who were going to be our next generation of change makers. Along with the camps, we sold 36 Giving Gals t-shirts and other pieces of clothing with Mahatma Gandhi's "Be the change you wish to see in the world" on the back. Through your support we were able to fundraise over $360 and spread the message of hope. All in all through selling the shirts, running camps, and donations we were able to fundraise $1046 to help medical crises around the world.

Over the summer of 2014 before fundraising for Project C.U.R.E. we decided to do some hands on work. We did this by volunteering at gaining grounds, a non-profit farm donating fresh food to meal plans and food pantries, and by participating in the Emerson 5k run/walk raising money for cancer patient care at Mass General. Although Project C.U.R.E. was obviously a very worthy, effective cause it came to us the importance of helping those locally. We hope to continue helping out these local organizations and recommend that others check out the many other wonderful opportunities there are locally to help out people just like us with problems we could never imagine.

To learn more about what we do check out our website at or follow us on Facebook at

Thanks for all your support - we couldn't have gotten where we are without the support of people like you!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Project C.U.R.E. Info

As a new fall project, we, the Giving Gals, have decided to help fundraise for an organization called Project C.U.R.E. (Commission on Urgent Relief and Equipment) which is an organization that provides medical supplies and care packages to communities around the world in need. They are the "largest supplier of donated medical supplies and equipment to developing countries around the world".  Please check them out through the link above and we'll keep you posted on our fundraising efforts along the way!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dream Big! Summary (Spring 2014)

        Throughout the past three months, the Giving Gals have been raising money for an organization called Dream Big!. This is an organization that gives scholarships and equipment funds that allow girls in the Boston area to participate in sports and physical activity. Though we faced some road-blocks within the group, we were able to rise above them and reflect upon the work that we've accomplished since our first spark in June of 2013. Since then, we've been able to raise around $5,500 for various organizations and are hoping to grow even more. 

To raise money in our last project, we hosted a "camp", we held a raffle, and we sold homemade soaps. The camp we hosted was an after school, Valentine's Day themed "camp" for kids in grades two to four. We played games outside, made Valentines and crafts for relatives and friends, and we finished with a very messy cookie decorating session. It was such a fun time getting to know and interact with the kids and it felt good putting smiles on every one's face. Though this was our first themed "camp", it was not our first "camp". In fact, we've hosted one in every fundraising effort since last June. It's been interesting to see how we've learned to entertain the kids while still having fun ourselves in unique ways. We really enjoy hosting them because it gives us a chance to teach younger kids about philanthropy in hopes that they will keep a spirit of giving with them throughout their whole life. 

In addition to hosting a Valentine's day"camp", we also held a Dream Big! raffle. The raffle was a new idea that we thought up when brainstorming new ways to raise money. We were a little bit concerned about the amount of money we would make off of this compared to the amount of money it would take to make it possible, but it ended up to be more than we expected. We originally wanted to raffle off a gardening basket, a lady's luxury basket, and a Concord gift card basket. But as the project went on, we were given a hair salon giftcard for $80 and a free massage which were also raffled off separately  Selling tickets was a bit of a struggle at first, but we ended up selling around $500 worth of them (including donations). We were glad that this new form of fundraising was successful so that we may be able to use it again in future projects. 

As mentioned before, we also sold homemade soaps to raise money for Dream Big!. It started when we wanted to get more of our friends from school involved in the Giving Gals' work as they started to show more interest. An afternoon was held where we spent the whole time making soaps of all different shapes, sizes, scents, and colors. We sold the soaps by size and ended up raising around $215 worth of soap. It wasn't as successful as we had hoped but  we have now learned that selling soap may not be the best form of fundraising. 

We ended up raising a total of $1,400 for Dream Big! thanks to all those who contributed to our "camp", raffle, and soap selling. Currently, we're working on a mission statement and due to busy schedules, will be taking a small absence of fundraising and instead, will be working more on volunteer work. We hope that you stay tuned as we try to make more of an effort to post more often about our hands on volunteer work.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Dream Big! Info

     We're currently raising money for an organization called Dream Big! that provides low-income and homeless girls with equipment for sports and physical activity. They give scholarships and equipment grants for towns and schools that can't afford them. Jen Cannon, a runner participating the Boston Marathon,  is buying her bib from Dream Big! and has asked us to help her raise the money. Our goal is to raise $1000 and we're doing so by hosting mini, afternoon, "camps"; selling raffle tickets for a raffle; selling homemade soaps; and by collecting additional donations.