(image taken by me featuring the hottie cover created by Julianne Negri)
For 20 years I worked professionally in the field of volunteer management in the United States. I helped non profit organizations figure out how to use the time and talents of volunteers. I loved what I did:)
Four years ago I underwent a major life change. I left my career, moved to Australia, had my third child and became a stay at home mom. I also learned in a new way what my professional career had been about as I threw myself whole heartedly into being the thing I had helped others to recruit and manage - a volunteer.
As a professional I used to hear organizations lament about the difficulties of finding volunteers. Now that I am on the other side I do understand these challenges in a different way, but I am convinced more than ever that people can give, if we expand our thinking about what one can do to "volunteer."
A great example is the Hottie Challenge. The aim of the challenge was to make a hottie cover. These hottie covers are now being exhibited in the gallery space at Open Drawer Art Textiles and Learning Centre from Friday July 1 to Sunday July 24, 2011 to raise money for the Margaret Pratt Foundation. The Margaret Pratt Foundation Heart Lung Transplant Trust is a registered charity whose aim is to encourage, develop and maintain Australia’s world class expertise in the field of organ transplantation by supporting research that addresses the problems faced by children and adults after heart and lung transplant. The aim of the research must be to improve the outcomes for heart and lung transplant recipients.
Over 100 people created a hottie cover. These people may not have looked at themselves as volunteers, but that is what they are; they gave of their time and talent to help the Margaert Pratt Foundation.
You can help too. Until July 24th you can visit the exhibit at the Open Drawer. You can buy one of the hottie covers (each is being sold for $50). You can also vote for your favorite hottie with any amount of good old fashioned Australian currency. All monies raised will be donated to the Foundation.
We visited this last Sunday. My two oldest had fun picking out their favorites to vote for and we even bought one!
If you can't help this cause, I hope you will think about what you can do where you live. Remember, volunteering makes your heart grow stronger:) Cyndy
PS If you can't visit you don't have to miss out on seeing many of the lovely hotties, you can visit them in the Flickr Group. You can see mine here.