Tuesday, December 22, 2009
The Don Bosco Organization and Johnny Dare’s Hand Up
The awesomeness happened again this morning, but I’m probably going to be a bit off on the names (I was driving to work and things were just happening too fast for me to commit to memory). In any case:
Carrie mentioned that it looks as though the Don Bosco Centers 2009 Holiday Friends Program will be unable to help their last 30 families this year, as they’re $5000 short of the total funds required to cover them. Johnny remembered that Carla Brewer, Director of the Family Support Center, is a friend of the show, so he called her.
Carla explained that this year they had to cut down on the number of families they could take on, to ensure they could cover them all, but that it turns out they're still going to be short. Now, the Holiday Friends Program “mobilizes donors throughout the city who are looking for a way to give back during the holidays to adopt families in need. Clients apply for the Holiday Friends program and are screened for genuine need. Donors can then choose the family they wish to adopt, and can either deliver the gifts directly to the family or deliver gifts to Don Bosco for the families to pick-up.”
So who are the adoptees? “Imagine being a single mother raising three children, struggling to make ends meet and just hoping that you'll be able to provide a memorable Christmas for your children. Imagine being a senior citizen, alone with no family nearby, using your little income to pay for rent, utilities and medication, but wishing you could afford to feel the warmth of the holidays. Imagine being a father who is picking up the pieces after losing your job with nothing to spare for your family during the holiday season.” These are the local folk in need of us.
If this all sounds familiar, it’s because, as Johnny explained this morning, his Hope for the Holidays was originally modeled after the Holiday Friends Program. Small world, no?
You know what came next: Johnny threw open the phone lines to see how much Hope for the Holidays could bring in for the Holiday Friends.
And 9 minutes and 53 seconds later, all $5000 had been raised!!!
Gimme a HELL! Gimme a YEAH! Stand up right now!
Gimme a HELL! Gimme a YEAH! Yeeeeeaah!
Hey! Hey! HEY! HEY!
One of the things that was so typical, and yet so astonishing, about this was the $2500 single donation from the Pipefitters working up North of the city. These guys aren’t local, but have been up there awhile working and listen to the Johnny Dare Morning Show every morning, and decided they wanted to contribute to Hope for the Holidays. Just like that.
So, working away from home, away from their own loved ones, they put together their $2500 and have been trying to get through the Hope for the Holidays phone lines to donate it for weeks (but the lines are always busy, because the people in this area are freaking AWESOME in their awesomosity … yeah, stole that term right there from Rassles and ain’t ever giving it back … and fair JAM those phone lines every day lining up to give back into the community). They finally got through today, and in one fell swoop (or is that one swell foop?) cared for fifteen local families. FIFTEEN!!
It all happened so fast that when Johnny went back to Carla on the other line to congratulate her, she was literally undone. You could tell listening to her as she tried to thank Kansas City that Carla was overwhelmed at the abrupt change in circumstances. And what a wonderful change it was!
I’m only sorry that I cannot for the life of me remember exactly who those wonderful Pipefitters are … but whoever they are, they’re honorary members of the community now.
And you have to admit, isn’t it way cool that one of our longstanding local programs bred one of our other longstanding locals programs, and that between the two they pretty much cover all walks of life demographically? You can’t not find a way to help out around here!