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Raise your hand if you were part of Help the Howards? Thank you. I see all 8 hands up! Maybe I should rephrase that: if you were signed up for Help the Howards before a day before the event . . .yes those are the 8 hands.
It really was 5 years ago tomorrow that Caring for Community was born. I still remember the week leading up to the event. Late nights sewing bags, building the boards we would play on, begging people to play this game they had never heard of, worrying about the weather holding out for our outdoor event. I still remember the torrential downpour that came Fri night and into Saturday morning and the last minute phone call from my good friend offering up his venue for the day. (Try to tell me God doesn't love a good cornhole tournament!!). I still remember the 2 hours of round robin play leading up to the eventual tournament. I still remember the ridiculous payouts we promised (again praise God it was all donated back!). And I'll never forget sitting across from that family several days afterwards, as strangers, we presented a check for almost $2000. That feeling is powerful, almost intoxicating. It drove us to do more! Even today the best part about every tournament is not the fun we have, but the opportunity to help someone.
I'd like to believe we have come a long way. Although, I don't sew bags or build boards anymore, some things never change - begging people to play and constant worry about weather seem to be constant!
Thanks to some great influences C4C has continued to grow. As of today we have given away more than $40,000 and helped raise an additional $7000 for other charities. We've had nearly 300 people take part in our tournaments, built great relationships with an incredible group of sponsors (see that panel on the right side of this page) and continue to desire to do more in our community.
So for anyone that follows along with C4C thank you. Obviously, this doesn't happen without great people supporting us. Supporting us with their time, with their prayers, with their wallets - it's all very much appreciated. We are looking forward to whatever is next for C4C. . . (which by the way happens to be a tournament May 30th at the Mellow Mushroom in Mansfield click here for details
J. D. Thompson - Director: Caring for Community
It was about this time in 2009 that our small group saw a need in our community and rallied together to come up with an idea to help one family! Four months later we were running our very first Cornhole For Community event. At the end of that day we wrote a check for $1950 to a family that was overwhelmed, first they were overwhelmed by life, next they were overwhelmed by the generosity of our community!
Since that time C4C has given away nearly $28,000 (!!!) through four major events. We have served families, neighbors and organizations with a desire to be a blessing wherever we can be.
But, Build the house is unique in many ways for C4C. 1) in previous years it was always about just raising as much as we can. There would be no disappointments because there was no goal. 2) C4C beneficiaries have always been new people, people that we built a relationship with because of the event and their needs 3) there is less stress when you are just a community group trying to help others.
However, this year, we certainly have a goal! We need to raise the money to fund Benjamin’s house. C4C team has been more focused, more intentional and more outgoing than any other year, that’s because our goal this year is bigger than any number we have ever raised. Do we think we can do it. . . there is always some doubt, but we know the people that support us. We know our community, we know we can get there. At the end of the next couple of days we need to receive nearly $13,000 to reach our goal. Please help us do that! Play in the tournament, eat the food from the food truck, bid up the auction prize that you know someone else wants and GIVE at the event or through that button on the upper left corner of this page!
Additionally, this year is different because of the family we are helping. This is a family that is very special to my family and our community. This is a family that has had a year of stress, and uncertainty, mingled in with a mix of joys and blessing and through it all never lost faith in the plan that God has for them and the mission that they are on. Their desire to love orphaned children thousands of miles away through a safe and nurturing environment is just a small picture into the compassion that they have. I was with them early on after they found out about Benjamin’s impending issues, I was with them in the hospital after her water broke earlier than normal and later I met baby Ben – created just the way God intended. It’s through his short, but impactful life that many people will be touched.
As of August of 2014 Caring for Community became an IRS recognized 501c3 tax-exempt non-profit, with that comes great responsibility. But the process of doing so has driven us to a place where we are even more determined to have meaningful impact in Mansfield and all around. The status has opened several doors this year that didn’t get the attention that we’ve gotten in the past. We look forward to serving the people of our community for many years to come.
Looking forward to a great event tomorrow, with great people around us, benefiting a great cause. Please join us in any way possible!
J. D. Thompson
Director – Caring for Community