January 21, 2017 was a historic day. If you're reading this blog, chances are good you have also seen the photos and news stories from cities across the world, flooded by women and girls (and men and boys) in pink hats marching to make their voices heard. The accounts are astounding, the photos beautiful, and we stand 100% in support of those that were out there. In the city of Portland alone, over 100,000 people filled the downtown core in a 100% peaceful protest. We are so proud of this amazing city.
For our part, we knew we needed to do something meaningful on this day, but neither of us are good with large crowds, and I have two small children I was nervous about involving. So, we decided that January 21, 2017 would be the perfect date for our monthly volunteer event. Sixteen like-minded people joined us, and absolutely rocked the afternoon. In less than two hours, our crew put together 37 adult bags, and checked another 29 bags that had been donated in the last month.
All told, we delivered 66 finished bags to Catholic Charities, replenishing their stock just in time - they had delivered their last adult bag earlier in the week. As we finished stuffing bags onto their newly dedicated Butterfly Box shelving, a case manager arrived to pick up an adult bag to take to a newly resettled refugee. To all of our donors and volunteers, that need, and the others that follow, would have gone unmet if not for you. Thank you.
In addition to the date, the moment in history, this volunteer event meant a lot to us because for the first time, when introductions were made, most of the people who came to support our cause came just to support our cause, not also because they are our friends or family. Obviously, the support of our friends and family is incredible, and it's no less important that the support of others in our community. But, to look into a crowd of people and realize that they are there not because they love us, but because they heard about our organization and were moved enough to reach out and help, is an unbelievable feeling. We are so thankful for everyone's support, and we love seeing new faces and hearing from new people. It lets us know that we must be on the right track with this endeavor, and that regardless of what lies ahead, the hearts of so many remain open to the refugees arriving in Portland everyday.
Thank you again and again.
Alysson & Adrienne