St. A's Altar Guild, Santa Monica, CA. 3 Years
I'm motivated when I see my actions making a positive change in my community. Over the years, I've been lucky enough to have been involved in inspiring projects that gave me a sense of purpose, and allowed me to meet the most incredible, giving people. Thanks for letting me share some of those experiences here.
Corazon is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving community and neighbor-to-neighbor relationships between California and Mexico. My family gave to the organization for years through our church, but nothing compared with the experience of taking part in the build in Tecaté, Mexico, in 2008 with my fellow parishioners. I was humbled by the hospitality and grace I found in the little village where we built a house for a family in need.
Chantiers Jeunesse Maroc/Council of International Educational Exchange
In 1997 I traveled to Morocco through the Council of International Educational Exchange to join the Chantiers Jeunesse Maroc - a national program that works with multiple countries to promote global friendships though volunteer work. I was stationed in Fes for 3 weeks, where I was part of a team that worked to help restore the wall around the city. I saw a very small part of a very long project (estimated 10 years) but I did get to see the before and after examples in the area where we worked. This was one of the greatest things I've done in my life. I still keep in touch with some of my CJM teammates.
From 2006-2008 I canvassed for the Courage Campaign in California through the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian center in an effort to educate voters on Proposition 8 and the effects that the Marriage Protection Act would have on same sex unions. During the process, I helped gather support for same sex marriage through petitions, fundraisers, and advocacy. http://www.hrc.org/
In 2009, I took part in the Seva Challenge, a non-profit event hosted every year by Off the Mat into the World for the Engage Network. I helped raise money for the Uganda Project through letter writing, and web-based fundraisers that went to support the work of 4 NGOs in Uganda: Shanti Uganda, The New Hope School, Building Tomorrow, and PSI/Youth AIDS.
For the Kids:
I'm an active member of my daughters' school's PTO, involved in fundraisers and organizing. I've been a soccer coach, a soccer ref, and a team manager. My favorite in-class volunteering has included yoga, book club chaperone, art projects, library shifts, and tutoring. I think kids are our greatest natural resource, and we should invest in them as much as we can to ensure a brighter tomorrow.