Thursday, November 22, 2007

Heroes for Children on YouTube!

In February of this year, Heroes for Children, with the help of a talented man named Kyle Raybourn, created a DVD for donors, volunteers, and presentations. The video featured the stories of three beautiful and inspiring families. In September, we got the idea that this needs to be on YouTube. But, it wasn't as easy as originally planned. The DVD was too long. So, I went to Kyle and asked in his busy schedule if he could help us find a way to showcase these HFC families and stories. The result? Three vignettes for you all to enjoy! Be on the lookout--we will feature each story separately here on the blog, and then they will be on the Heroes for Children website as well.

On this Thanksgiving day, I give you the story of Julianna. I know her family has much to be thankful for this year and every year! Staci--thank you so much for participating in this with us. We're honored to have you apart of Heroes for Children!

Note--if you ar a subcriber of the blog receiving this as an email, you may have to visit the site itself. Pop on over. Leave us a message!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A spoonful of HFC

Dear Friends,

I've been meaning to write for about a week. But a trip to Houston, wrap party for Hold'Em for Heroes, shopping for our new holiday program, and general work, I got behind. So, instead of several different blog posts, I'm throwing it all together for you in an HFC list of updates!

  • We WON!! Heroes for Children won the Blogger's Choice Awards for Best Charity Blog!! 261 votes placed in support of Heroes for Children. Channeling a little Sally Fields here--You like us!! You really like us!! In all seriousness--thank you to those that placed your vote in support of Heroes for Children and this blog. I love blogging and love the communication it allows us to have with the many Heroes for Children donors, supporters, etc. We would love to have more people reading, so be sure to share this blog with everyone you know!
  • On a side note--if you are a subcriber of the blog and receive this as an e-mail, I invite you to pop over to our blog site and leave a comment. We love to read your comments and feedback on how things are going with Heroes for Children. Let us know if there is a topic you would like to see on the blog, ask a question, or just say hi! We want to hear from you.
  • In the past two weeks, I've shopped at Walmart in San Antonio, Dallas, Plano, and Houston! Why, you ask? Because HFC launched our new program for families, Holiday Heroes. Holiday Heroes adopted fourteen families throughout the state (selected by social workers in the hospital based on the needs and resources of the families). Volunteers in San Antonio, Dallas, and Houston stepped up to the plate to shop, shop, shop! From clothes to Christmas trees to electronic game systems, we bought some great gifts for the families. I can't wait to take the items to the families (I promise to post more than). Until then, I think I will opt to stay out of Wal-Mart for a while. Who knew that shopping would be SO much work?
  • It's that time of year! Oh yes, it is the time of year for us to think about the holidays. With the holiday season, it's also time to consider our charitable giving. I sincerely hope you will consider Heroes for Children during this time. Making a gift to charity is a great gift for a loved one.
  • Laptops for Love has seen record numbers this year. With restricted dollars from our Hold'Em for Heroes and Golf Classic events, we will be purchasing new laptops this December and January. This year, more than forty laptops have been donated to teens (compared to half that in 2006!). I love this program and love what it does for the teens. Last week, I received this email--"There is a 16 year old boy whose family is very poor who is inpatient for chemo every other week. His parents can't afford to take time out of work, so he's pretty much in the hospital by himself all day. I have seen him two other times before today when we went in, and he is always completely wrapped up in blankets, hat on his head pulled down almost covering his eyes, won't make eye contact, and basically grunts a response if you try to engage him. Today we went in and [the other social worker] goes "So, I've got something to tell you" and he does his grunt thing, and she goes "There's this organization, Heroes for Children, and they have program with laptops" and he doesn't respond and she goes "I'm hoping to get it in the mail any day now, but we got you a laptop" and he goes "What?" and looked at her, and she goes "You're going to get your very own laptop. To keep. It's yours. You can bring it home" and I swear to God the kid goes "A laptop???" and actually SMILED." Now that's powerful.

So there you go. One big healthy dose of Heroes for Children all together for you. Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday. I sure have plenty to be thankful for this year, and one is most definitely the love and support shown to Heroes for Children. Thanks for being a part of that.

Very gratefully,


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

A Pop Star and a Super Hero all rolled into one!

Kayla is our newest member of the Super Heroes Birthday Club! With her sassy, glamour girl party, Kayla took the opportunity to educate her friends and family about what it means to give back. During the party, party goers decorated goodie bags with fun items for cancer kids. They gave coloring books, crayons, necklaces, card games, and much more! In lieu of gifts, Kayla collected more than $500 for Heroes for Children! Way to go, Kayla! Not only were you a glamour pop star (what a diva!), you were a super hero too!

We're honored to have kids like Kayla collect donations on their birtday with the easy to use Super Heroes Birthday Club package. Kayla received a membership card, will have her picture featured on the website for HFC, gets a certificate for "saving the day on her birthday," and will be invited to be on the special Super Heroes team for the 2008 5K. Most importantly, Kayla knows that she did something very special and that she is a hero too!

You rock, Kayla.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

November Volunteer of the Month

Katie and Casey Pascuzzi

I have had the pleasure of working with this volunteer for over a year and half. The moment I met her, I knew that Katie and I would not only work together, we would become friends. Thankfully, I was right!! I love working on the Heroes for Children Golf Classic every fall. The best part? Getting a chance to talk with Katie every day! Her energy, enthusiasm, and love for those around her keeps me motivated and inspired. She gives so completely of her heart. In 2006 and 2007, Katie helped raise more than $120,000 for Heroes for Children through the Golf Classic. Not only did she tirelessly work on the Golf Classic this year--she did it pregnant! Luckily, she had the ability to go and rest at my house with our dog during the tournament to rest for sweet Carmen Grace (coming December 2007!!!).
Katie--Thank you for your work for Heroes for Children. You're the best. I look forward to more "Katie and Jenny" shows working with you in the future.

Name, Age, Occupation:

Katie Pascuzzi, 25, Domestic Engineer (Housewife)

How did you get involved with HFC?

My previous employer, Willow Bend Mortgage, was a presenting sponsor for the Golf Classic in 2006. As the Business Development Manager it was my job to oversee the operations of the tournament for our company. During that time, Jenny Scott and I became fast friends and I fell in love with HFC and their mission. That is why I agreed to Chair the Golf Classic in 2007.

Do you have any kids and/or pets?

I am currently pregnant with my first child; a little girl, Carmen Grace, who should be arriving sometime in December. We also have two four legged children, Kiah 5yrs, and Maverick 1yr. Both are SPCA rescues and of course the best dogs in the world=)

From looking at you, no one would guess that…..

I’m actually 25; I still get mistaken for a teenager-even since I’ve been pregnant. I don’t see it, but I guess I will like that someday=)

Favorite place to eat:

Rick Steins Steakhouse; I don’t make it there very often, but when I do it is definitely worth it!

What’s on your book shelf?

Lots of books about dogs, horses (I used to compete in equestrian competitions), and now, children.

What’s in your iPod/CD changer?

Right now I am hooked on Taylor Swift, but I also have John Mayer, Dave Matthews, and Justin.

Who’s your hero?

If a hero is someone who inspires you, I would have to say Beth Moore. Her passion for the Lord inspires me to be a better person and follower of God. One day I hope to be as dedicated a servant as she is.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Hold 'Em for Heroes

Our new men's event, Hold ’Em for Heroes was a huge success bringing in a new breed of Heroes for Children supporters… the husbands!!

Hold ’Em for Heroes was held on October 25, 2007 with over 100 men showcasing their exemplary (or should I say novice) poker skills. The men had a blast playing Texas Hold’Em and re-donating for the cause. The highlight of the evening was the live auction for the Laptops for Love Program. At first, the men bought 13 laptops but once we mentioned the fact that the ladies bought 17 laptops at Heroes and Handbags a few months back, the hands started flying. We ended up selling 19 laptops. This means 19 teenagers will be able to connect to the outside world during their treatment!

Thanks to everyone who made the event a huge success. We are so excited to spread our mission to a new breed of HFC supporters!