A Giving and Thankful Community
How blessed we are to be in America, one of the most giving nations in the world. Not only do we give daily, but we even have a “season of giving.”
According to the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University: “Total charitable contributions by American individuals, corporations, and foundations was an estimated $298.42 billion in 2011.”
Not only are American’s giving, Frederick County is giving as well. We are blessed to live in such a community. In October of this year Frederick 48 raised over $200,000 for 26 local charities, exceeding its prior year of $28,000.
Earlier this month Christmas Cash for Kids raised over $145,000 for over 1,600 children in five days. Thanks to Bob Miller, Blaine Young, the entire WFMD/930AM family and others for encouraging their community to give.
The Patty Pollatos Fund has raised $2,000,000 since its inception. Debbie Williams is a force to be reckoned with.
My son Ben was recently the beneficiary of such a charitable organization, The Monocacy Foundation, Inc. Since they began giving to the community at large, this organization has given $130,000 in grant awards to special needs citizens of Frederick County. My son’s school, Rock Creek, has been the proud and thankful recipient of such grants.
Ben is a growing 7 year old with severe developmental delays, hypotonia (week muscles), Cerebral Palsy and other medical anomalies. He doesn’t walk and he doesn’t talk, but he loves to smile and loves to be a part of life. Well, as long as it isn’t too noisy.
He loves to go to Hagerstown Community Park and feed the fish and swing on the big blue swing. He also enjoys the museum there.
He also loves to go to The Great Frederick Fair and look at the animals. He loves the big tractors; but we have to keep him away from the Midway that tends to make him cranky and upset.
He also likes Wal-Mart and the Mall, but he’s only been to each on a few occasions.
The first place he’s going when he has his lift is the Brunswick Library. His sister, Grace, and I have a weekly ritual of going there and spending hours picking out books. We are both looking forward to Ben being able to participate. He loves books, especially ones with pictures of smiling happy faces and bright primary colors.
Ben is limited by the ability of the person watching him being able to carry him around for however long they can carry a 40 pound person who likes to flap his arms; and/or their ability to lift his wheelchair into a van that can accommodate it. His chair is heavy and awkward and unless there is another adult around to help lift the chair into our vehicle, he doesn’t get to go anywhere outside of our home and yard.
He could go for rides, but if he wants to get out of the vehicle and participate, he needs his chair to go with him. Flappy, squirmy, gigglely boys can’t be carried around for long.
When Mary Malone, principal at Rock Creek, knew we were trying to save money to afford installing a wheel chair lift she mentioned to me during an IEP meeting that one of our local charities, The Monocacy Foundation, Inc., assisted special needs community members with things like this.
I applied on Ben’s behalf, and he was blessed to receive a grant for not only the wheel chair lift, but the cost of installing it in our van.
Ben’s life and world are forever changed for the better by this gift. This will open so many doors for him. We feel very blessed and are very thankful.
Ben and everyone in his family thank Ms. Malone for being the kind of person who not only listens to what parents are saying, but hears them when they speak. We are appreciative that she knows her community and those in it who are in a position to help those in need. I would never have known about this wonderful foundation if not for Ms. Malone.
To those who donate, I want you to know how thankful people like me are. More importantly, I believe it’s important you know how much of an impact your donations have. Lives change, worlds are open, laughter and tears created, and joy is shared.
To those who donate, thank you. To the Monocacy Foundation, Inc., Marty Young; the Board of Trustees: Gael Butcher; Donald Hiltner, Jr; Virginia Sulcer; George Chaney, III; Michael F. Hosford; Kathy Rohrer; Dustin Sclater and Pam Pencola; your donors and everyone involved – thank you for all you do.
May your hearts be filled with the comfort of receiving and the joy of giving! Happy Hanukah and Merry Christmas.