It is better to give…
Fall seems to be the season of fundraising for so many worthy organizations as I am often asked to donate a piece of jewelry to be included in a silent auction, live auction, or a variety of other means of raising funds. I am happy to do so and glad that I am able to contribute in a small way. But I do believe that I have benefited more than those I donate to. Here’s why:
One event already happened, the annual Riverside Hospital Ball run by the Hospital Auxillary on the Virginia Eastern Shore. I donated a pair of silver flower earrings. I don’t know who purchased them, but I hope they enjoy them. But a wonderful thing happened when the young woman from the auxillary came to my home to pick them up. I instantly liked her, could see what a warm, interesting person she was. We talked briefly about some technical things, shared a few phone apps that have made our lives easier, and I discovered that she is an AMAZING artist, an illustrater with talent galore! She has illustrated numerous children’s books, designed over 100 children’s toys, done loads more, too. So my little silver earrings brought me a new artist friend! I definitely gained by giving.
Another fundraiser was a few weeks ago and I am pleased that I was one of just 5 artists who helped raise over $3400 for the Museum of Art in DeLand, Florida. Kudos to all who participated. It is important to keep the arts alive!
This month there is going to be an Art Auction of over 100 pieces of art from Florida artists, including some original paintings by Florida Highwaymen. If you aren’t familiar with this group of artists, the Highwaymen, also referred to as the Florida Highwaymen, are a group of 26 African American landscape artists in Florida. Self-taught and self-mentoring, they created a body of work of over 200,000 paintings, despite facing many racial and cultural barriers. Several pieces of my jewelry will also be included in this live auction. This auction is sponsored by the West Volusia Historical Society and is a fundraiser for them. I have gained several special new friends by my association with this wonderful group in DeLand, Florida. For more details, visit www.delandhouse.com.
In November, a wonderful family owned and operated seafood restaurant, The Island House in Wachapreague, Virginia is holding their 7th annual Oyster Roast benefiting The Navy SEAL Foundation.
The restaurant owner is a former Navy Seal and he generously gives so much to the local community, I am always happy to donate a piece for their auctions. https://www.facebook.com/islandhouserestaurant/
We are all asked to give in some way or another throughout the year. I feel very thankful that I am able to make something that helps a worthy organization meet their fundraising goals. My jewelry adventure started out with this plan in mind many, maaaaany years ago! 1984 to be exact. As a teacher of the deaf, my students were often on the receiving end of generous donations from many groups and organizations. I came up with a Sign Language jewelry design, then two and then ten and then over a hundred that I designed and had manufactured and sold to deafness related organizations so that they could re-sell them as fundraisers. While my business flourished, many schools for the deaf were able to raise much needed funds for a variety of activities, supplies, trips, and services. For me, it opened the door of entrepreneurship and lead me gently by the hand into my current world of metalsmithing, designing, and best of all…travel!!! So, by giving, I have received abundantly. For that I am truly thankful!