Last weekend, several people from the Sedgefield and Greensboro community gathered for a dinner and silent auction to raise money for a special needs child. Her name is Lilly Austyn and she suffers from Rett Syndrome, a muscular disorder that impacts her mobility, communications, digestion, heart function and much more. She is an adorable child who was the first one approved by Make a Wish for an outdoor therapy pool. However, there was a big problem, her parents, Brooks and Jaime wanted Lilly to enjoy the pool year round and the enclosure was going to cost over $55k. When we were meeting one day, I said, “We should have a fundraiser.” The idea took several planning sessions and a team was formed to align with a non-profit organization, coordinate donations, volunteers, catering and much more. I had served as the Swim for Cancer chair and ALS chair for several years, so I kind of knew what was involved.
Some of you may remember that one of my other businesses is creating a newsletter for the residents of Sedgefield. This is how I met Jaime and Brooks. Jaime is a hairstylist and Brooks owns a landscaping company, Proterra. Brooks also works nights at UPS so he can provide health insurance for his family, an aspect I tremendously admire about him and they both are business advertisers in the publication. Brooks called me one day and asked me if I knew any builders and I said, “Yes, I’ve been on mission trips with a few builders. I’d love for you to call James Critz, from Ned Eldridge Contractors because he is one of the Sedgefield Living business partners.” So they did and James offered to build the enclosure at cost.
The event held at Grandover Swim & Racquet club raised over $17K, with over 120 people in attendance and included 70 auction items that were donated by area businesses. One of the other blessings about the event was that it kept me busy and helped me control some stress and worry I was experiencing because of some major family issues. So I ask you, what is creating stress and worry for you today? Is there someone that you could help that is less fortunate than you that will keep you productive and focused on serving others in need? I admit that I had to unplug from work for almost two weeks because of all the family & volunteer demands. In the end, it was totally worth it! If you are interested in watching a video about Lilly or to make a tax deductible donation on Lilly’s behalf, click on the link below.