Posts filed under ‘Volunteer’

New project expansion; busy summer at Bright Blessings!

The Bright Blessings team is happy to announce expansion plans for our Bless-A-Birthday schools program! 

As one academic year comes to a close, summer time at Bright Blessings will be busier than ever as we prepare to serve even more homeless students in the coming 2011-12 school year. 

In partnership with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, our birthday program for elementary, middle, and high school transient homeless students will expand to serve an additional 500-800 kids in need.  That means we’ll be busy all summer long organizing and preparing program supplies!

Are you interested in volunteering at Bright Blessings this summer?  If so, we need your help!  

It’s going to take thousands of additional snack bags, hundreds of Care & Comfort Bags, and plenty of gifts, backpacks and more.  We invite you to come volunteer and help us prepare for this expansion project.  Please consider bringing some donations to help!  Visit the “Support” page on our website for more details about this project and a list of our needs. 

Your contributions and volunteerism will help Bright Blessings bring joy and support to over 500 additional homeless students in the coming school year.  We thank you!

May 19, 2011 at 3:12 pm Leave a comment

Community cheers for Bright Blessings!

(March 24, 2011) – In just eight weeks since Bright Blessings began and completed its move and facility renovations at our new location in Mattthews, the local community has already rallied its support for the cause!  We want to share a few of these remarkable volunteer and special project efforts that have helped us keep the wheels in motion during our move, enabling the programs of Bright Blessings to continue making an impact for thousands of homeless children across our community.

*  Members of a MARA (Matthews Athletic & Recreation Association) basketball Cheer Team spent time together at Bright Blessings filling hundreds of favor bags for the homeless children served by the organization’s Bless-A-Birthday program. 

 *  “Kids For A Cause” at Providence Springs Elementary School in Matthews filled more than two dozen backpacks with snacks, supplies, goodies and care essentials to aid transient homeless students served through Bright Blessings’ Student Birthdays Project. 

*  Over 20 youth from Philadelphia Presbyterian Church in Mint Hill spent hours at Bright Blessings’ new facility helping sort and organize gifts, labeling and shelving books for its Gift of Literacy project, and assembling party kits and supplies. 

*  Middle School students from Christ Covenant Day School worked together for a morning of service at Bright Blessings, selecting and wrapping birthday gifts for for local homeless children ages tots to teens; filling birthday snack bags for transient homeless students; and wrapping and labeling book gift sets. 

*  More than 200 volunteers participated in projects at Bright Blessings during Love Week, a city-wide week of volunteer service led by Elevation Church.  Every day scores of volunteers helped with organization, sorting, wrapping, shelving, and more!

Our greatest thanks to ALL of our dedicated volunteers and supporters who help Bright Blessings bring joy and support to thousands of homeless children across our region every year.

March 24, 2011 at 2:18 pm Leave a comment

Today Show’s Sara Haines visits Bright Blessings

CHARLOTTE, NC  Sara Haines with the Today Show made a visit to Bright Blessings!! She spent the afternoon with us at our new office as we prepared for a party and then headed over to a local shelter for a birthday party.  We had a fabulous dinner provided by the Ladies of Jack & Jill of America – Charlotte Chapter.  Then it was party time with our friends from FunkyTown Parties .  Sara and all our volunteers had a blast with the birthday kids and families dancing the night away.  Stay tuned for more details to watch our segment on the Today Show with Hoda and Kathie Lee.

March 21, 2011 at 7:49 pm Leave a comment

Love Week 2011

CHARLOTTE, NC  Thank you to all the volunteers that supported Bright Blessings during Love Week 2011.  We had close to 200 volunteers in 6 days to help unpack, sort and organize our new facility.  There were also children and youth helping wrap gifts, fill goody bags and make candy necklaces for the hundreds of children we serve every month.

Elevation Church had a goal of 25,000 hours of service during Love Week 2011.  With the help of more than 25 churches from all over Charlotte they exceeded their goal with over 34,000 hours of service!  Isn’t that amazing!

What a blessing all the volunteers were to so many organizations in Charlotte.  Love Week 2011 impacted thousands of lives around Charlotte from collecting shoes, prepared meals, cleaning up parks, of course helping out at Bright Blessings and much more across the city.

If you see anyone wearing a LOVE WEEK T-shirt around Charlotte, please be sure to THANK them for their service during Love Week 2011 and ask how you can get involved next year!  www.loveweekcharlotte.com

Thanks again Elevators for everything you do for Bright Blessings!  You Rock!!

March 21, 2011 at 6:35 pm Leave a comment

Bright Blessings Welcomes Carly Behrmann as our Student Birthday Program Manager!

Carly Behrmann took on a huge role as our Volunteer Student Birthdays Program Manager in mid-Novemeber of 2010. Carly has been hard at work ensuring that the many local homeless children in Charlotte area schools receive Birthday gifts, goody bags or a “Fit to Celebrate” Party Pack.

In partnership with A Child’s Place, transient homeless students across Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools are identified for our Student Birthdays Project. These children do not live in area shelters but rather in motels, campgrounds, and other transient situations. Upon receiving the child’s name, age, gender, Carly and a group of dedicated volunteers start packing up goody bags for the Birthday Student. All student birthday packages include gifts, as well as care essentials and a blanket. These party packs and gift bags are dropped off anonymously and given to the child through social workers at the schools.

Carly and husband, Chris, go way back with the founders of Bright Blessings, John & Amy Cervantes. John and Chris were college classmates! The Behrmann family volunteered and attended events when possible for the past few years, but until recently, Carly’s full time pharmaceutical sales position, along with family responsibilities, kept Carly from being as involved as she wished.

Much like the Cervantes family, (whose family service project blossomed into this national 501(c)3 nonprofit) Carly wanted to get her children in the spirit of giving and thought Bright Blessings (formerly Birthday Blessings) was the perfect opportunity.

The Student Birthday Program is lucky to have individuals, churches, schools, and other organizations come together to donate materials and time to help make the program a huge success. If interested in getting involved with Carly and the Student Birthday Program, email contact@brightblessingsusa.org or call (704)846-BDAY!

March 14, 2011 at 5:22 pm Leave a comment

New volunteer positions available

February 2, 2011 – Bright Blessings continues to grow!  We are currently seeking volunteers to serve  as Facility Hosts at our new location, The Giving Village, in Matthews.  We are also seeking two Volunteer Co-Coordinators to help plan and carry out birthday celebrations for children at a local homeless shelter once per month.  Please click the link below to read more about these opportunities and let us know if you are interested in joining the Bright Blessings team! 

Facility Hosts and Volunteer Party Co-Coordinators

We are a volunteer-strong organization serving thousands of homeless children each year, thanks to the many helping hands and hearts who give so generously to help brighten the lives of kids in need.  Thanks for your interest in serving with Bright Blessings!

February 2, 2011 at 10:43 pm Leave a comment

Volunteer Spotlight: Elizabeth Nickles

Introducing Mrs.  Elizabeth Nickles!  Elizabeth Nickles is Birthday Blessing’s volunteer party coordinator for Florence Crittenton.  Elizabeth has been with Birthday Blessings since March of 2010.  Elizabeth is a happily married mother of two “babies!”.  Her family relocated from Virginia Beach two years ago.

While having family fun at Monkey Joe’s with her two beautiful children (Faith and Will) early this year, Mrs. Nickles took notice of a fundraiser Birthday Blessings was holding at the location.  Elizabeth loved the organization’s purpose (Birthday Blessings aims to provide positive emotional experiences for homeless children and their families by lifting spirits, promoting self-worth, and supporting basic needs) and knew she wanted to be involved. 

Elizabeth has been doing a fantastic job making these parties successful.  One of the mothers at Florence Crittenton told her that the “Blessing Baskets are awesome and really do help” us!  Blessing Baskets are given to babies and new mothers born into homelessness.  They contain essentials like onesies, formula, diapers, bottles, pacifiers and baby powder.

To learn how you can help Elizabeth and Bright Blessings (formerly Birthday Blessings) continue to provide Blessing Baskets and Beyond, click here: http://birthdayblessings.org/Volunteer.html find out more about our programs.

January 14, 2011 at 5:05 am Leave a comment

New Year announcements: name change and plans for new local facility

 (Charlotte, N.C., January 10, 2010) – Birthday Blessings, a volunteer-led nonprofit serving homeless children and families across the greater Charlotte region, is proud to kick off the new year with two major announcements.  In addition to a name change, plans are under way for the organization’s new headquarters located in Matthews, North Carolina. 

 A new year, a new name:  Effective January 10, 2011, Birthday Blessings will become Bright Blessings USA (“Birthdays and Beyond for Homeless Children”), a strategic decision by the organization and its Board of Directors with twofold purpose: To better convey the breadth of the nonprofit’s programs and services which have evolved significantly since its founding; and to provide a unique and trademarked brand for the planned official launch of the organization’s National Affiliate Network.   

 “It’s amazing to see how the Charlotte community has wrapped itself around this organization, helping it grow to where it is today,” says Amy Cervantes, volunteer executive director and co-founder.  “John and I are constantly humbled by how much Bright Blessings has expanded and how many lives are being impacted as a result.  Our community is truly remarkable.”

 Service to the community, by the community:  After operating at its current location for two years, thanks to the generosity of partial donated space by local nonprofit LifeSpan Services, Bright Blessings is preparing to move its headquarters to Matthews.  This spring the organization will open the doors to its new facility, The Giving Village, a concept inspired by the nonprofit’s founding goal of providing relevant, hands-on volunteer opportunities for children—and people of all ages—in a safe, comfortable and uplifting environment.   The nearly 4,000 square foot facility located at 608-A Matthews-Mint Hill Road will be home to the Bright Blessings programs and its supporting projects, and will host hundreds of volunteers and visitors monthly.  Each aspect of the organization and its program services will be brought to life in the form of a small town operated by its “villagers”—a community of volunteers.  Facility details and layout are available online at www.BrightBlessingsUSA.org

 – – – –

 Bright Blessings began in 2005 as a family service project created by Mint Hill couple Amy and John Cervantes as way to help children in need while fostering a love for volunteerism in their own young children.  In 2008, they incorporated their service venture as a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit, quickly expanding the organization’s programs and services.  Today, the programs of Bright Blessings reach more than 2,000 homeless children and families every year, thanks to success of its volunteer-led infrastructure and the many dedicated supporters and participants whose daily efforts help brighten the lives of children in need.   

For more information, go to http://www.BrightBlessingsUSA.org.

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January 10, 2011 at 6:51 am Leave a comment

Corporate Service Day for Shire Pharmaceuticals Regional Team

CHARLOTTE, NC  On Monday, the Regional Team from Shire Pharmaceuticals visited our office to donate toys, games and baby items.  They also spent the afternoon filling Party Packs and Blessing Bags for our Student Birthday program. Thank you so much for exchanging your office Christmas party for a day to help Birthday Blessings.

 

“On behalf of our team, I would like to sincerely ‘Thank You’ for providing us the opportunity to work with your organization. We had a wonderful time purchasing the items for the birthday and blessing bags, and delivering them to your office. We were truly moved by our tour of the Birthday Blessings facility and the opportunity to fill many birthday bags! Imagining those bags, which we helped to fill, being delivered to a child on their birthday and the emotions that may come along with that, made an incredible impact on all of us and we consider ourselves fortunate to work with such a wonderful organization.”

“Once again, thank you for organizing and opening your office to us (a day that it was closed, nonetheless!); it was absolutely a wonderful experience. We look forward to working with you again in the future. Please let us know if you need anything!”  Lauren Hudson – Shire Pharmaceuticals

December 8, 2010 at 3:07 am Leave a comment

Introducing Deborah Truesdale, a new member of our volunteer staff

Deborah Truesdale, volunteer coordinator for Blessing Baskets Program

CHARLOTTE, NC – Birthday Blessings would like to welcome Deborah Truesdale as its new Blessings Baskets Program Coordinator.  Deborah is a Charlotte native who has always adored children.  She recently retired from AT&T after nearly 31 years of service.  Deborah first read about Birthday Blessings in the Charlotte Observer around the time of its founding in 2005. Since then, she has read many of the articles written about Birthday Blessings, including the one in Reader’s Digest in February.

“I decided I wanted to see what Birthday Blessings was all about,” said Deborah, who was particularly touched by the Blessing Baskets program.  She whole heartedly supports all the programs of the organization, and the importance of helping others in need.

She began her role this month as the coordinator for our Blessings Baskets Program, which helps celebrate and support the arrival of homeless babies by providing baskets filled with food, clothing, books, and comfort and care essentials. These baskets not only support the critical needs of babies born into homelessness, but they also bring hope to needy mothers while encouraging a positive mother-child bond during these early stages of development.

Welcome to the Birthday Blessings team, Deborah!  We thank you for your commitment and support.

If you want to contact Deborah about our Blessing Baskets Program, email her at deb@birthdayblessings.org.

October 2, 2010 at 7:55 pm Leave a comment

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