The 2014 Givin’ Where I’m Livin’ (GWIL) campaign provides support and publicity for local non-profit charitable organizations competing for GWIL matching funds during the campaign’s Week of Online Giving, April 20-25th.
Around Dripping Springs is pleased to feature this series of GWIL non-profit profiles to help publicize their unique missions to the community. We invite you to get to know these wonderful organizers and learn more about the important work they are each doing to enrich our community. Please share their stories, and be sure to donate to your favorite during the Week of Online Giving! Learn more at: http://www.GivinWhereImLivin.org
NOW MEET THE DS KIDS FUN FOUNDATION WITH BOARD PRESIDENT, JENNIFER DODSON:
DS Kids Fun Foundation – formerly DS Youth Activity Fund (DSYAF) – was founded in 2009. Our Board of Directors & Advisory Committee are comprised of community members with significant experience in the non-profit world , working with children, and management of extracurricular activities. We were formed out of an outreach committee within the Dripping Springs Presbyterian Church (DSPC) while brainstorming community needs we could help fill. As discussions formed around the expense of extracurricular activities, and how many of our neighbors struggle with things like critical illness and job loss – we wondered if there was a need to help families that didn’t qualify for financial aid, but were likely in need of assistance. We quickly determined that there was in fact a need – and research shows how greatly children benefit from participating in sports & the arts outside of school. We wanted to help families keep their children involved in these activities as they struggled through short-term or long-term financial struggles. We decided that this program should come from the community, not just within the walls of DSPC, so we created the Foundation – and invited others to join our newly formed Board.
DS Kids Fun Foundation was formed to provide financial assistance to children that reside in the Dripping Springs Independent School District (DSISD) who would otherwise be unable to participate in extracurricular activities due to financial constraints. Our goal is to help not only low-income families, but also children whose families are temporarily working through situations like serious illness, job loss, or divorce.
It is the desire of DS Kids Fun Foundation that each family contribute a portion of the total registration cost, as an indication of their commitment to support the child’s extracurricular activity. The recommended contribution is 20% of the total amount needed. In 2014, we expanded our guidelines to include children residing outside of DSISD that would be coming into our community to participate in extracurricular activities that are not offered in their area.
WHAT HAPPENS IN THE COMMUNITY THROUGH YOUR EFFORTS?
When a family requests funds from us, we ask that the child either write a note or draw a picture, demonstrating their desire to participate in the given activity. We also often receive thank you letters from the families we have helped, expressing to us how much their children have benefited from the sport or art they were able to be a part of due to our financial contribution. These drawings and notes remind us every day why we started the Foundation, and how many lives we are touching. We truly believe that by keeping children busy with extracurricular activities, they will see increased self-esteem and develop positive character traits like leadership and good sportsmanship. Those children will then grow up and go out into our community.
We began granting financial assistance in 2010, and helped four children pay their extracurricular registration fees that year. With presentations to DSISD school teachers and counselors, and working with organizations like DSYSA & DSISD Community Education, we increased that number to 32 children in 2011, 49 children in 2012, and 68 children in 2013.
WHAT EVENTS OR ACTIVITIES WILL YOU BE DOING TO SUPPORT THOSE GOALS THIS YEAR?
In 2014 we strive to grow our partnership with more organizations like DSYSA and DSISD – that offer a variety of extracurricular activities for school-age children. We hope to continue to get our name out to families that might need our help; through school counselors, PE & recreational sport coaches, art & dance instructors, and organizations like Helping Hands.
Our primary annual fundraiser is our golf tournament, being held on May 15 at Falcon Head Golf Course. This is a 4-person scramble format, with a 1:00pm shotgun start. We have opportunities for sponsorship, a silent auction, a BBQ dinner provided by the Holy Cow Cook-Off team of DS Presbyterian Church, and a performance by the DSHS Jazz Orchestra. Register and learn more at www.dskidsfunfoundation.org/golf
On March 22, DSYSA Basketball hosted the 1st Annual 3v3 basketball tournament at DSMS. Proceeds from this event went towards the DS Kids Fun Foundation.
On May 10, DS Kids Fun Foundation with work with DSISD Community Education to host an Extracurricular Expo at DSMS. Local organizations that offer extracurricular activities for children in Dripping Springs will be given the opportunity to promote their classes and upcoming camps & clinics – including live demonstrations. This will be a free, community event, that will allow families to interact with many of the sports & arts that are available to their children. Learn more and sign up to have a booth at http://drippingspringsisd.revtrak.net or email email@example.com
DONATE OR VOLUNTEER YEAR-ROUND:
Mail donations: P.O. Box 1185 Dripping Springs, TX 78620
Visit online: http://www.dskidsfunfoundation.org
Phone: 512-970-0205 Fax: 512-684-0444
“Like” on Facebook.com/DSKidsFunFoundation
Follow on Twitter: @DSKidsFunFoundation
WEEK OF ONLINE GIVING:
APRIL 20-25, 2014
GIVIN’ WHERE I’M LIVIN’ http://www.givinwhereimlivin.org
DS COMMUNITY FOUNDATION http://www.dscommunityfoundation.org
http://www.tinyurl.com/GWIL2014FFL (Friendships for Life)
GWIL2014 IS SPONSORED BY: