Last night I had the pleasure of attending my 1st meeting of 100 Women Who Care of Alamogordo. Although I have been a member since the inception last year, I have yet to be able to attend a meeting, as I don’t actually live in Alamogordo. Attending the meeting last night, provided the opportunity my mother always talk about, of being at a meeting. After every meeting, she discusses how incredible it is to be in the room, with the women, during the meeting, and being able to witness what happens when women come together. And although I have voted by proxy every other meeting, as many other members do, it isn’t until you go to a meeting and experience what happens that you truly appreciate what an incredible organization this truly is.
Over the last few days, I have watched the founders of this chapter busily gather everything needed to make this organization run smoothly and seamlessly for all of the members. My oldest daughter was able to help participate in the drawing of the organizations this quarter, and although she just had fun collecting chips and putting them in a bag, my hope is that from an early age she understands the importance of being in service to others. Over the next few days, I watched my mom answer phone calls, emails, and texts about voting and the chosen organizations to present at this quarter’s meeting.
This meeting the three Non-Profit Organizations chosen to present were: CHINS, CASA, and the Tularosa Basin Historical Society. As with every meeting, the three organizations are drawn at random, prior to the meeting and informed they will have 5 minutes to present their organizations mission.
CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) was first to present this quarter. This presenter, like each to follow, was so passionate about her cause. This incredible program advocates for children in the foster care program. Each advocate is a volunteer, who is assigned to a child and speaks as their eyes and ears throughout the child’s foster care stay. The CASA works with the school, department of social services, and in anyway helpful to help the child during an extremely difficult and emotional time. The CASA presenter, hoped that if her organization was awarded the money, more volunteers would be able to be trained to help the over 130 children in the foster care system in our area.
CHINS (Children in Need of Service), was next to present. CHINS provides a variety of services for children and families. CHINS provides counseling services, family and parenting classes, safe, affordable childcare, and countless other services to strengthen and support families and children in the community. CHINS was requesting funding to help provide parenting classes to community families, which are free of charge to those who attend. Unfortunately, due to grant restrictions, they are not allowed to fund-raise during specific months in the fall, if they want to receive certain allocated funds; These months correspond with their biggest fundraiser of the year, The Galaxy Gala. In order to continue with the Galaxy Gala, they no longer receive a portion of their previous funding, due to these restrictions.
The final presenter was the Tularosa Basin Historical Society, which works to preserve the legacy of our area, through gathering and preserving artifacts and stories of significance. The TBHS also restored and opened the Tularosa Basin Museum of History. I have lived in Alamogordo most of my life, and unfortunately have never been through the museum. After listening to the speaker, and others in the room discuss the museum, it’s now on my list of things to do. This presenter is working to recast a statue, at only the cost of materials, to be located in front of the museum, along with other historical information of it’s significance in Alamogordo.
When it came time to vote, it was an extremely difficult decision. Each organization provides such value and service to our area. Each one passionate about their cause, and each in need of additional funding. Last year, the 100 Women Who Care of Alamogordo gave $43,300 divided among four different non-profit organizations in our area; Last night, another $10,000 was given to an amazing non-profit organization, CASA. In less than an hour, CASA received this funding to continuing helping those in need in our community. This is what happens, when women come together for something bigger than themselves, it changes lives and makes our community better and will continue to do.