Originally Posted by Seawaters
This sounds like a perfect way to spend the day, Festive Spirit. I am sitting here with a hot cup of coffee. It is chilly here in northern California, believe it or not. It is even supposed to be coolish all this week, and I even have on my sweatshirt jacket right now! I have some great news: The California-Hawaii Elks raised OVER $3,000,000 (yes, three million dollars) for our "Purple Pig," which is our charity fund for crippled children. We use that money to help families who have kids with physical needs (we help a LOT of kids with cerebral palsy). These are families who would not otherwise get help. For example, Lily, my granddaughter would not qualify even though I am an Elk. She receives services through SSI because her case is one in which she will have to have aid throughout her whole life. She has "insurance" through SSI. The kids we help are those who don't quite qualify for a lot of SSI, but who find it difficult to meet the medical needs because of the high cost of insurance and therapy. We, as Elks, provide FREE vision and hearing screening, physical therapy (which is world-renowned in the area of cerebral palsy, especially). I am so proud to be a part of this worthwhile project. I was chosen to be the chairman of our district again this year, so I am going to be busy coming up with ideas for the Elks Lodges to try for fundraising dinners, auctions, and raffles. If you have any ideas, please let me know. Also, if you know of any kids in California-Hawaii who might benefit, let me know. The other states have their own children's projects, so if you know of a child in need, I will try to find out info for you. Also, we give away scholarships like you wouldn't believe. I think the Elks are either number 2, number 3 or number 4 in the amount of scholarships given out. Number 1 is the US Government. Bill Gates is right up there. He might have passed us up, but we were Number 2 for a LONG time. If you know of a child whose parent or grandparent is an Elk, he or she automatically qualifies for $1,000 as long as an application is filled out and sent in. To get the other Elks scholarships, the student does NOT have to have parents or grandparents who are Elks. Every state has a scholarship program. The US finalists receive $40,000 a YEAR for four years!!! Kids will say, "But I could never win." Well, he or she is right--you will never win if you don't apply!!! It does not cost anything to apply! So, if you know of any senior who lives in the US, let me know and I can hook you up with a state Elk association for a scholarship application. When a kid applies, he or she can get a local scholarship, then they can go on to district and get another scholarship, then on to state, then on to national. The opportunities are endless!!! Okay, I am off my soapbox for now!