How about if each month we have a focus on a particular item or two that we're low on? We'd really like to include simple art supplies in our set-ups. So this month, how about thinking about buying a box of crayons, a coloring book, a pad of plain paper...that sort of thing. And we can make sure that each child has the ability to create!
Also, since spring is on the horizon, how about grabbing some artificial flowers or plants. They make an enormous difference to the rather institutional living rooms in the apartments. When I was at Michael's yesterday, fake daffodils were on sale and I grabbed five bunches...a dollar for each bunch.
Karen also mentioned that a friend just emailed her to let her know she is coming by the Open Bin this morning with a dozen kitchen towels. She asked if she could bundle them into packs of three for each set-up. Definitely a good idea. Anything you can do to help like that is appreciated.
Here's a reminder as well. Any donated clothing must be clean and folded and preferably bundled into age appropriate piles. This saves us an enormous amount of work. As a yardstick for what we'll take, how about if we wouldn't wear it or we wouldn't put it on our kids, we'll pass on it...send it to the Good Will or Salvation Army. That applies to just about every donation you or your friends make. We do not accept items that aren't in pretty great condition. A lot of times these are things our friends have given us for TWC because they're unsure of just what it is that we do take. If you could go through these donations first, that would be most appreciated. We're trying to instill in the folks we help a sense of pride in their new homes and hopefully change, in this small way, the pattern of homelessness.
Also, as you all know we've got the Open Bin every Friday morning from 10:30 to Noon. We've got one card table for sorting clothes, accepting donations, etc., but we find we need another. If you have a spare card table hanging out in your garage that you never use, we'd love to have it. Karen and Lisa will be there this morning and I'll pop by as well since Toni Colvin told me she has a lot of donations that she'll be hauling over. Last week Julie Rosendo helped at the Open Bin and was great. Just a reminder to bring your calendars to the next meeting as we'll have the Open Bin sign-up sheet out.
And here are some photos from our last two set-ups in no particular order since I'm feeling lazy:
Set-up #1: Destiny London, Paulette Rapp and I were in and out of the apartment in no time. We were fast. Problem was it wasn't ready for us when we got there (so we went out to breakfast!).
Set-up #2: Karen and Janaki handled this one and did a great job. Because Janaki works full time she hadn't been able to do a Westwood set-up before, so she particularly enjoyed being a part of this.
And finally, Topanga Women's Circle has been honored by the Chamber of Commerce! Check out the link below and if you can make this awards ceremony and sit at our head table, we'd love it!
And here's a story about a homeless teen (family has now been housed) that's particularly heartwarming: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/19/homeless-ny-science-whiz-_0_n_1216381.html