Nominated by her friends, Kathy became another one of our shining Sheroes. What the entire friend group told us was that Kathy lights up the room. But not just any room; there are lots of people who can do that. Kathy lights up a damp, cold, cinder-block room in a local prison. From that dismal room, Kathy creates light that spreads out to warm the prisoners, their families and friends, and all who encounter this project. Twice a week, Kathy, often after a shift as a hospice nurse, where she’s already exhausted from bringing light where little exists, leads a team into the Northwest Arkansas Community Correction Center to provide a storytelling workshop. It’s called the Prison Story Project. The concept is simple: Kathy and her team, plus as many as 12 incarcerated women, meet for twice weekly workshops for 4 months and create a script from those writings. They hire actors and produce a staged performance that gives voices to the voiceless women behind bars. Most of the inmates have suffered sexual or physical abuse as children and as adults, all suffered severe emotional trauma, most dropped out of high school before graduating, most only ever had low-paying jobs, and all […]
We are excited to introduce you to our Boob Squad! This has been their name and their campaign for a decade – and we love it. The Boob Squad was our pioneer team for our new Peer-to-Peer fundraising offering. We are so grateful to them! On the very same week that we launched our new fundraising platform, Erin wrote to us asking if she could raise money for Together Rising. She explained that she and her friends band together each year to raise money and awareness for the fight against breast cancer. Erin’s best friend lost her mom, Jodi, to breast cancer when they were in college. “I’m writing today because my friends and I would like to do a fundraiser with all the proceeds going to Together Rising. My best friend lost her mom to breast cancer when we were sophomores in college. We were just babies when she had to say goodbye and although she is still kicking butt at life, it’s a painful struggle for her to not have her mom. For the past nine years a few of us have banded together as “The Boob Squad.” This year, as something special for our 10th year, […]
Last year, we began bringing Together Rising’s work to Glennon’s speaking events. It is our dream to somehow serve every city Glennon visits, to be introduced to communities and address their specific needs. We tested our dream out at an event in Herndon, Virginia. We asked Becca, beloved minister of the venue, Trinity Presbyterian Church, what her community most needed. She met with her team and reported back, “BOOKS. Our beloved elementary school across the street serves many low-income students and always in need of books. We feel like we should collect kids’ books.” Herndon Elementary is a Title I school—57% students qualify for free and reduced lunch and 45% are English Language Learners. Many of the children don’t speak English at home and their families don’t have much money—so they don’t always have access to books when they go home for the summer. The school’s privately-funded program to help the kids who were most behind in their reading had been recently cut. One passionate Herndon teacher, Lizette, was particularly sad and worried about her students. She started to dream about creating a Bookmobile. Her dream was that she and a team of other volunteer teachers would drive a truck into two of the most […]
Jennifer nominated her “one in a million” friend, Casey, for our Shero award last year. Casey means the world to her friends and her people. And the world means everything to Casey. She’s a mom, foster mom, and stand-by-your-side friend. After the tragic 2010 earthquake, Casey’s husband, Ron, began taking trips to Haiti to help rebuild. He fell in love with the country and its people. Together, along with their sons, Casey and Ron regularly traveled on international missions to Central America, but Casey had never joined Ron in Haiti. In June 2014, they departed on a cruise stopping in several ports to do service projects. A visit to Roatan, Hondoras made the greatest impact on Casey. She was deeply touched by a mother and daughter, living at a garbage dump site, that she met while handing out bags of rice and beans along with hygiene items. As a gesture of her gratitude, the mother placed the bracelet she was wearing on Casey’s wrist. Casey and Ron returned a few months later to those places with twelve pieces of luggage filled with donated items. Later the same year, they returned once again to the Roatan dump site in Honduras to deliver […]
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Contributions to Together Rising are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. Together Rising's tax identification number is 45-5362738.