noun: collaboration; plural noun: collaborations
1. the action of working with someone to produce or create something.
When I think of Easter Sunday, I imagine celebration.
When I was little, the day started with an egg hunt, (or maybe it was just my personal quest for chocolate... without guilt). We always made a trip to church in our Sunday best. And the afternoon involved brunch with grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins.... You get the picture.
2016 most likely won't hold the same sentiments for a few families in the Estrella community.
Or... just maybe... this year holds more.
LOSS AND LOVE
One Estrella woman lost her 14-year-old daughter in a rollover accident. She got the news at our local bagel shop. Another Estrella family lost everything they own in an early Easter morning house fire... including their beloved pet, Daisy.
The number of tears shed in this community cannot be measured.... Nor can the acts of kindness.
"WE JUST WANTED TO DO SOMETHING."
Thousands of dollars have been donated. Gift cards have been collected. Countless donations of clothing, toiletries, and kitchen utensils have been dropped off.
Offers for additional support continue to roll in. It's astonishing. When called upon... this community fills the need.
Our local Safeway donated... so did our Walgreens.
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor even touched, but just felt in the heart.” –Helen Keller
A friend contacted me to let me know the GoFundMe page had been promoted and reported it had more than 24,500 hits in less than 24 hours. Another family I know maxed out their daily ATM debit limit on Easter Sunday to deliver cash. And neighbors have set up meal trains for the next several weeks.
HUMOR IN THE HEALING
The A-M-A-Z-I-N-G people at Chase Bank contacted me yesterday offering to set up a fund for donations. The benefit of the account is that it will not charge fees on the donations.
While I was sitting at Holly's desk, I was able to get the family on the phone with her. Right then and there, she was able to give them their account information and order bank cards. I don't know if I was just exhausted or overwhelmed. But, seeing this happen in person brought me to tears. It was one less thing the family had to do among a long list of "to dos" after their livelihood had been lost.
As I left the bank... I told the branch manager I had no way of repaying this incredible act of kindness. She said to me, "We just wanted 'to do something.'"
I've heard that comment so much in the last three days. No matter how big or how small. Many people just want to 'do something' to help. People have taken time from work to help. People have opened up their homes to take donations and house these people. (And... quite frankly... I think I've hit my max on cell phone calls in one year... Good thing for "limitless" minutes! Humor people. Humor.)
Last night I met with my friend to help her gain access to funds. As we were trying to transfer the account... she had to come up with a password. What had been a very rough and draining couple of days suddenly turned into hilarity. I won't say much other than... this girl has a sense of humor! Hearing her laugh was priceless.
My gift to our community is to be able to coordinate. It takes collaboration within the community to make an impact. Here are all the ways YOU can contribute.
Estrella Mountain Church is taking funds for Robin. "You can bring a check to the church office, made out to "EMC" with her, Robin Godfrey's, name in the memo line. Or you can give online through our website emcaz.org, Click "Give" and then "Give Online." Put your amount on the Benevolence line, with 'Robin Godfrey' in the blank next to it. We will make sure she receives the money in a timely manner. Thank you for being a blessing!" ~Ann Knister
*If you can only donate to the Harmans through credit card, please go through the GoFundMe account.
*Chase Bank can take money order, check, or a transfer from one Chase account into the Harman account.
*Cash needs to go directly to the family. Drop off at 18544 W. San Carlos, Goodyear, Arizona 85338.
YOGA IN THE PARK
Lisa Bozeman has one more "Yoga in the Park" fundraiser on Friday, April 1st.
Please meet at the park near the corner of 184th Drive and La Mirada Drive in Estrella just off San Gabriel West in the neighborhood of Mequite Ridge. Questions? 580-231-0278
SPECIAL PRAYER GATHERING
March 30, 2016
Estrella Mountain Church Sanctuary
Everyone is welcome!
Jen's Note: From the bottom of my heart... Thank you. I'm completely humbled to see the generosity of this incredible community. These families will be able to get back on their feet quicker because of YOU. Collaboration is the key. You should all feel comfort in the kindness in our community.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jennifer Barber is a Goodyear resident resident of almost 20 years and a retired broadcast news journalist. Involved in various nonprofit and city organizations since 2008, Barber has a unique view of what's happening in the West Valley of Arizona.