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Charity of Choice: Toys For Tots

November 10th, 2011 at 00:00 am » Comments (1)


According to the Journal of the Continental congress – it was on 10 November 1775 that the United States Marine Corp was created

Resolved, That two Battalions of marines be raised, consisting of one Colonel, two Lieutenant Colonels, two Majors, and other officers as usual in other regiments; and that they consist of an equal number of privates with other battalions; that particular care be taken, that no persons be appointed to office, or enlisted into said Battalions, but such as are good seamen, or so acquainted with maritime affairs as to be able to serve to advantage by sea when required; that they be enlisted and commissioned to serve for and during the present war between Great Britain and the colonies, unless dismissed by order of Congress: that they be distinguished by the names of the first and second battalions of American Marines,…

So, what better day that 10 November 2011, the 236nd Birthday of the US Marine to talk about how their service to our country does not stop at defending us but in their service to those in need.

Toys for Tots began in 1947 when Major Bill Hendricks, USMCR and a group of Marine Reservists in Los Angeles collected and distributed 5,000 toys to needy children. The idea came from Bill’s wife, Diane. In the fall of 1947, Diane handcrafted a Raggedy Ann doll and asked Bill to deliver the doll to an organization, which would give it to a needy child at Christmas. When Bill determined that no agency existed, Diane told Bill that he should start one. He did. The 1947 pilot project was so successful that the Marine Corps adopted Toys for Tots in 1948 and expanded it into a nationwide campaign.

Over the 59 years of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program, Marines have distributed more than 370 million toys to more than 173 million needy children. This charitable endeavor has made U.S. Marines the unchallenged leaders in looking after needy children at Christmas. Over its 16 year life span, the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation has supplemented local toy collections with more than 70.2 million toys valued at more than $387 million; plus has provided promotion and support materials valued at over $4.7 million.

I challenge each and every one of you to find your nearest local donation point and or for my neighbors to ACT LOCALLY to make this a better holiday season for all the children of our country.

Charity Challenge-American Red Cross

November 1st, 2007 at 00:13 am » Comments (1)
November is the anniversary month of this blog, in just a few days, it will be one Year old and I will be, well let’s leave it at a lot older than that okay.

For many, the Holiday season and our birthdays are often a time of reflection. I just happen to have both in same time frame.

Donate Now

Each year as we all reflect, it seems there is just no end to the natural and man made disasters that call on the charity of us all each year.

It is both heartwarming and utterly fascinating to see how the on-line community so often, so generously and so quickly responds and especially those very special people who like to bend string respond with comfort by whatever means they can.

Generous as those who practice the NeedleArts always are, when I read a note that saying someone wanted to help a friend who lost her home replace your yarn, hooks and needles, I thought how generous, but then I remembered something written September 1st, 2005, by Karey Bresenhan of Quilts, Inc wrote:

” I am terribly concerned about the urgency of the short-term needs of these poor souls–(Katrina evacuees) … for shelter and perhaps long-term living arrangements. Most of them left New Orleans with nothing but the clothes on their backs. I know there are other projects that are being started for quilts for long-term needs, but right now, folks, these people have NOTHING and most of them have NOTHING to go home to. They need help NOW! ”

In other words, comforting as new craft tools and materials might be, there are/were more urgent needs. So Karey’s words have stayed with me, and admittedly coloured how I have chosen to help since then. As we each decide how or if we can respond, some by making squares or afghans or quilts; others by remembering that the Red Cross is a wonderful way to see that their ability to provide immediate relief and necessities not just to major disasters such as fire or flood create wide spread devastation, but also locally to that family whose home has burned to ground, or to firefighters in communities across the country.

I am fortunate to have many “fiber art” friends and much loved family who live in Southern California and especially in the San Diego area. So, this year, in lieu of the usual “nice dinner” to celebrate my birthday, we are sending donations to the American Red Cross– divided between our local chapter and the San Diego/Imperial Counties Chapter

I will be using the donation link for San Diego on-line donation service and designating the monies be used in both cases for:
Local Disaster Relief Fund

I would ask my friends and family who would normally send me even a dollar birthday card in the mail, to donate those dollars to the Red Cross Chapter of your choice instead. Email good wishes are enough for me – there is so much more needed by others.

I encourage you to use the On-Line method and add the amount of first class postage – even pennies can makes a difference.

If you can, please do participate in other initiatives to bring hope and comfort to victims, be it afghans or quilts for local law enforcement to have and distribute, or larger efforts to benefit the San Diego folks,

Not sure how to find your local chapter? Just plug in your zip code here:

And, if you can, be a regular Blood Donor – you can get information about this by finding and contacting your local regional center. – it just might be your life that is saved as a result of your generosity.

And yes, as the subject implies, I have a few more “Charity Challenges” in mind. So stay tuned.
Even if we don’t have a lot, it is so easy to share just a little.

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