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Girls’ Haven Annual Gala, Beaumont Texas
This was an evening filled unique auction items, and a delicious Italian dinner catered by Bado’s with Italian wine pairings.
Girls’ Haven staff commitment is a true blessing to the girls with their involvement on a daily basis. It was great to see that they are backed up with the support and sponsors to be able to give these girls a chance to succeed in life.
Home for displaced young women to use funds for new computers
January 17, 2019
BEAUMONT, Texas – Girls’ Haven, the local non-profit organization that offers shelter to at-risk girls between the ages of six and 18, received a $5,000 grant from LoanStar Title Loans to buy a new computer system.
Jade Rayburn, development director of Girls’ Haven, said the money will be used to replace the Girls’ Haven existing computer system, which is used to admit girls to the home and other services. The old computers will be repurposed within Girls’ Haven.
“We’ve been having to do administrative tasks on computers that were slow and would sometimes just stop working,” Rayburn said. “It had become a huge barrier to our mission of providing a safe and loving place for these young women.”
The grant was made possible through a grant-matching initiative that LoanStar Title Loans started last year. This initiative, which matches donations up to $5,000, originally began when the Abilene United Way asked the company if it would match donations to provide a bigger impact to the charity.
Salome Stevens, a consultant with WindRiver Associates which was hired to direct community outreach for LoanStar Title Loans, said that Girls’ Haven was only able to raise $980 on Giving Tuesday this past November, which was far short of the organization’s goal to replace its computer system. Stevens said that Girls’ Haven humbly asked for LoanStar’s help to cover the difference, which the company was happy to oblige.
“Because we provide so much more than just shelter in the home through trauma counseling, training for our staff, and 24-hour accessibility – our budget is often very tight,” Rayburn said. “This grant allows us to bring our computer system into the current century, without having to cut back on the care we provide for our girls.”
Rayburn says the new computer systems will cost Girls’ Haven approximately $6,300. The $5,000 grant from Loan Star – in addition to the $980 originally raised –
will allow the shelter to replace its computers with little impact to the shelter’s annual budget.
“When I told the upper-management at LoanStar about the situation with Girls’ Haven they said, ‘We can do that,’ without hesitation,” Stevens explained. “I was so exited and almost in tears with joy. It is incredibly exciting to be part of LoanStar community-outreach efforts because I get to be apart of meaningful conversations and important local programs.”
“We are extremely grateful for the generosity of LoanStar Title Loans,” Rayburn said. “They give back to every community they serve and truly ensure that their fellow man – and young women – are okay and taken care of.”
A global day of giving
Many Thanks to Dr. Cathy Ashby, President and CEO of United Way of Abilene for approaching LoanStar Title Loans and bringing awareness about Giving Tuesday. Cathy learned about the community outreach underway and the intention of LoanStar’s continued goals to give back to the communities they operate in. She asked if LoanStar would consider participating in Giving Tuesday November 27, 2017, and that is where it all started.
LoanStar quickly expanded their giving efforts, and soon teamed up with several charities in different Texas cities.
The process was both challenging and exciting. What an honor to be the one asking charities if they would be open to receive matching funds up to $5,000.00 on Giving Tuesday?
Many different charities were contacted, and special thanks each one of these charities for being so gracious towards LoanStar. You should know that your kindness made a huge and memorable impact in so many ways.
It has been a great joy to get to know the charities and share their information in the LoanStar stores highlighting the charity services to customers and employees.
Marie Hanza, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity Lubbocksaid they have been hoping for a match and sent out an email to her Board of Directors announcing LoanStar’s support, and immediately received a $1,000.00 donation!
Wichita Falls’ Child Evangelism Fellowship® of West Texas partners with churches to reach children with the Gospel. Their mission to enlist, equip, and encourage a team of qualified leaders who will effectively fulfill the purpose of Child Evangelism Fellowship, expanding the work throughout West Texas.
Midland Children’s Rehabilitation Center provides occupational, physical, and speech therapy as well as tutoring for children with dyslexia. They are a pediatric-only facility serving infants through 22 years of age. Gail Heathington,Development Director,with Midland Children’s Rehabilitation Center responded quickly, and it was not until we toured their facility that the impact of this amazing charity hit us. So many children receive needed help here, and without them this gap would not be filled.
McAllen C.A.M.P. University provides opportunities to continue developing life and social skills after high school for special needs young adults and provides a respite for their families. Amanda Sasser, Director of Marketing and Business Development for C.A.M.P. University has been instrumental in sharing their commitment to service the communities around them.
Beaumont Hope Women’s Resource Clinicseeks to help women and their families with unplanned pregnancies while providing counseling, medical assistance, and education by the Glory of God. We were taken by the staff kindness and dedication to help the mothers throughout their pregnancy and yes….. for a year after birth. However, what really set them apart is their outreach beyond the mom, but also to the families. Among many different services to name a few they:
-Provide free pregnancy testing & options education at no cost to their clients
-Provide limited ultrasound imaging at no cost to their clients
-Provide a variety of services for men
Grand Prairie Chamber of Commerce, Maria Santi Director of Minority Outreach
DILA: A non-profit organization powered by the Grand Prairie Chamber Foundation, a place where they prepare the Latin American community for the future. They help youth and adults through educational sessions and personal development at no cost to provide improvement in their work skills and quality of life in the United States.
Bill Glass Behind the Walls
For more than 40 years, Bill Glass BEHIND THE WALLS has empowered volunteers to experience firsthand what it is like to help inmates to life-changing decisions. Many churches around the country make BEHIND THE WALLS events a regular part of their missions’ outreach. It was a privilege to participate with a team visiting a South Texas facility, leaving with a new perspective on life.
United Way of Abilene
To quote their mission statement:
“The mission of the United Way of Abilene is to improve lives by mobilizing the caring power of the West Central Texas area. We strive to collaborate to improve lives and better our community. We will do this by actively seeking to leverage the intellectual, organizational, institutional, financial, faith-based and personal resources of our communities as the best means to make positive, measurable and lasting change for the communities we serve.”
I am learning a lot about United Way from Cathy as we share stories we have heard about each other’s work. We have learned NOT to believe everything you hear, and it is best to go to the source and inspect what is true and what is not. I can write a lot about my experiences involving Giving Tuesday, but most of all I learned more about respecting people, loving people, and to forgive. The bridges that were built through Giving Tuesday continue to grow and expand aiming to encourage conversations, and to make each community a better place.
A unique, al fresco culinary celebration of spectacular cuisine and fine wine in the heart of downtown Abilene
A United Way of Abilene fundraiser featuring 4 courses of food and wine by:
Cypress Street Station
Taylor County Taphouse
Foley Family Wines
StrEATS started out as a rainy evening, but ended up at the Center For Contemporary Arts as the festivities continued. Everyone grabbed their wine glasses, candles and plates, and with a combined efford the rest of the evening went smoothly.