Ever wondered how you or your assembly can easily help people who are homeless and in need? Grand Worthy Advisor Alana has challenged our assemblies to create and pass out homeless care packages with a program called “Hope in a Bag.” You can prepare these bags easily with things that someone that is without a home would really appreciate in their time of need.
At the Northern Instructional on Saturday, June 17th in San Francisco, Grand Worthy Advisor Alana called upon California Rainbow to participate in several different types of service projects to benefit families across the state. First, we will be having a food drive that will culminate at the Southern Instructional that will benefit our Grand Service Project, Families Forward, directly.
She is also encouraging Assemblies all across California to hold food drives to benefit their local food banks as well. Click on the images below to download the flyers for the California Rainbow Food Drive!
2018 Grand Service Project
See the video of our Grand Worthy Advisor Alana making the announcement of this year's Grand Service Project, Families Forward, at the First Official Visit in 2017, by clicking on her picture on the right.
Below is the transcript of the speech given by our Grand Worthy Advisor, Alana, introducing our new Grand Service Project, Families Forward (www.families-forward.org), at the at the First Official Visit in 2017.
There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home. These famous words spoken by Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz are true, there is no place like home. But what if you don’t have a home to return to? What do you do then? Not all of us can click our heels together and magically find ourselves within the comfort of our own home. For many of us, our homes are a safe place to which we can return after a tough day at school or work. Unfortunately, not everyone has this same luxury.
Over 600,000 families in the United States go without a home every year. We know that a family will stick together through thick and thin, even if that means being homeless. As Californians, we are aware of the exceptionally high cost of living in California. As a result, many families in the state cannot afford a home. So, how can we work to solve this problem? We can work to give each family the home that they deserve so that they can start a new life going in the right direction--forward.
Families Forward works to do just that. Located in Orange County--an area known for its high cost of living--Families Forward helps provides over 150 low-income families in 2016 with a place that they can call their home. In addition, this organization also works to provide the families with access to its food pantry, career workshops, family support programs, basic school supplies, and helping families during the holiday season. Families Forward works to make sure that these families can start a new, better life filled with dignity, hope, and empowerment.
This year, let us work towards ensuring that every family has a place that they can return to every night. I would like to encourage each assembly to help out the families in their local community by planning a food drive or assembling homeless care packages for those in need. You can also reach out for the support from our sponsoring bodies and youth groups so that our Masonic family can work together to help families in need. I am pleased to announce that California Rainbow has selected Families Forward as our 2018 Grand Service Project and with our help we can make sure that families can keep moving forward and never have to look back, so that we all can say that “There’s no place like home.” Thank you.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: Amy Kimes
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – You could say that backpacks were stacked and overflowing in car trunks across the state. California International Order of the Rainbow for Girls (CA IORG) collected a total of 891 backpacks for A Place Called Home (APCH), an organization located in South Central Los Angeles dedicated to aiding underserved youth by giving them direction in education, arts, and overall well-being. Within less than a month, girls and adults throughout the state collected more backpacks than they could have dreamed of – 891 backpacks! A Place Called Home had only asked the International Order of the Rainbow for Girls to collect 500 backpacks, being satisfied with whatever amount of backpacks would come their way. But when the members, alumni, and supporters throughout California came together, they not only accomplished a phenomenal goal, they greatly exceeded it!
APCH helps youth take ownership of their lives and guides them in the right direction. One of their main focuses is helping their members stay in school and pursue a higher education and career. Backpacks are a fundamental necessity on every child’s back to school list and this backpack drive allows APCH to help its members have a fresh start at the beginning of the school year. CA IORG was excited to assist in this drive because it would help many children to achieve their full potential in school by helping them feel confident. Backpacks are one of the many ways that kids express themselves and when they have a new backpack, it gives them a boost of confidence that they otherwise wouldn’t have. This is just a small way of helping kids feel excited about school and learning and CA IORG is honored to be a part of it.
The International Order of the Rainbow for Girls is a non-profit service organization for girls ages 11 to 20 that teaches girls to be leaders by building confidence and public speaking skills in a safe and fun environment. It teaches girls
to help others with service to create a better community. Each year, CA IORG’s Grand Worthy Advisor, or statewide president, chooses an organization to be the state’s Grand Service Project. This year, Grand Worthy Advisor Heidi Johnson has chosen A Place Called Home to be California Rainbow’s statewide service project. Throughout the year, assemblies throughout the state will collect money that will be donated to APCH in spring 2017. But the service for APCH doesn’t stop at donations like the backpack drive; CA IORG has found ways to support APCH on multiple levels, which is what the organization is about: giving back to your community and serving others.
California Rainbow encourages and inspires youth to come together to make a difference – like how its members joined forces to provide 891 students with new backpacks for the school year. Just think, changing others’ lives can be as simple as a backpack drive. For more information on California Rainbow, contact Dana Regier, Supreme Deputy, International Order of the Rainbow for Girls in California at Dana.Regier@gocarainbow.org or Amy Kimes, Statewide Promotional and Marketing Team, International Order of the Rainbow for Girls in California at 714.293.6135 – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here to view the Official Press Release Page
A message from Heidi our Grand Worthy Advisor:
ATTENTION: Calling all backpacks!
Hi California Rainbow and friends! A Place Called Home needs our help! Every year in August, A Place Called Home holds a “Back to School” giveaway where they provide backpacks filled with school supplies to children in the community. California Rainbow has been asked to help their event by holding a backpack drive. We will be holding two backpack drives, one at the Southern Instructional (July 16th) and one at the Northern Instructional (July 23rd). If you are unable to attend either instructional but would still like to donate, please contact the Grand Assembly office at email@example.com. The backpacks are for children to use in the school year so please no drawstring backpacks.
Thank you for helping make a difference in getting children ready for a new school year!
A few additional details…
- We will be collecting the backpacks at the State Instructionals. Please bring your donation with you to that event.
- CAIORG will arrange for the delivery of the backpacks, so please do not send or drop off any at APCH.
- If you would like to donate additional items like pens/pencils, notebooks, markers, etc. those will be accepted but we are focused on meeting a need for 500 backpacks that APCH has.
- If you have any questions please email the Grand Assembly office.
For a downloadable flyer about the backpack drive, click here!
On May 29, 2016, at the First Official Visit hosted by Districts 17 and 20, GWA Heidi announced the Grand Service Project for the Dynamic Deer and California Rainbow. We will be working to benefit a non-profit organization named A Place Called Home. Heidi also asked that each assembly conduct a book drive to benefit a local program in their own communities.
You can read the transcript of her speech on the 2017 Grand Service Project page on the website or watch her give her speech on the CA Rainbow Girls Facebook Page (words in bold are links to the specific pages).
Today at Grand Assembly, California Grand Assembly presented their donation to the Bay Area Cancer Connections. The Rainbow Girls of California raised and donated $68,234.88!