On June 4, 2016 at Palmer Events Center, hundreds of Austinites gathered to celebrate and honor the incredibly courageous women who have battled breast cancer. Survivors proudly walked the runway in gorgeous artistic bras and accessories to raise money for an important cause and celebrate their vivaciousness. [Read more…]
What if the answer to homelessness is not as simple as creating more housing? This was a question Community First! Village founder Alan Graham struggled with when first working with Mobile Loaves & Fishes, an Austin nonprofit organization. It was relatively easy to “lift up” an individual off the streets and put a roof over their head. But giving them the support needed to combat a fall back into homelessness was another story.
According to Graham, the primary cause of chronic homelessness is the total loss of family and support. After concluding that offering a roof over someone’s head is not enough, the team at Mobile Loaves & Fishes decided to take matters into their own hands and create a community where the homeless and housed population of Austin could come together to eradicate homelessness and the stereotypes that precede it. From this unified effort, Community First! Village was born. [Read more…]
On April 28, 2016, women volunteers in pink hard hats gathered together in the Lowe’s parking lot off Brodie Lane for Girls Night Out, the kick off event for National Women Build Week. In partnership with Lowe’s locations across the country, Habitat for Humanity’s Women Build program encourages women to dedicate their time to assist in building homes for families in need of affordable housing.
This service impacts recipient families by providing them the independence of homeownership. At the same time, volunteers are educated in construction skills as they build the framework of a house. The event revolves around the idea of empowering women to inspire each other as they make a tangible difference in their community. [Read more…]
Every day while I sit in my car pushing through Austin’s traffic like a salmon in spring, I stare out my window and watch helmeted figures whiz by on their bicycles.
From my steel confinement, I initially experience vicarious anxiety: Yikes! To bike past these crazy drivers, you’d have to be pretty brave.
Next comes awe: Ugh, trekking up those hills in this humidity would be a pain.
And finally as these bicyclists ride off into the distance and I’m left in the same gridlocked position I was in five minutes ago, I feel sheer jealousy. I want nothing more than to abandon my car, feel the wind in my hair and actually reach my final destination. [Read more…]
Update: More than $8.5 million dollars were raised for Amplify Austin in only 24 hours. This is an amazing accomplishment. Thank you to everyone who participated!
The countdown to 6 p.m. on March 8 is nearing its close. Amplify Austin, Austin’s annual 24 hours of online giving, launches tomorrow. Six hundred nonprofits will come together on one website, where community members can donate to these local organizations.
From 6 p.m. on March 8 to 6 p.m. on March 9, donors can make a difference in the lives of their fellow Central Texans. In 2015, I Live Here, I Give Here, the nonprofit that launched this goliath of a fundraising event, raised $7.7 million for 500 nonprofits in the region. Amplify Austin has raised $16.2 million in total since its establishment in 2013, acquired from businesses and individual donors devoting their money to the good of the Austin community. [Read more…]
Guest article by Catelyn Silapachai
Here in Austin, adoptable greyhounds come from local racing greyhound breeders, other states where greyhounds race and Gulf Greyhound Park near Houston. This was the last race track in Texas to feature live racing, which ended at the beginning of this year.
As many hounds retire every month, there has never been a better time to consider adopting a greyhound. I adopted mine from Greyhound Pets of America-Central Texas (GPA-Central Texas) when I lived in an apartment, and discovered five reasons why this breed is absolutely perfect for life in our town.
Eighty-eight years ago, the crown jewel of downtown Austin, Zilker Park, opened to the public. That same year, Austin Sunshine Camps was founded, and the two have been inextricably linked ever since. Serving our community’s youth through after school programs and summer camps, Austin Sunshine Camps is one of the oldest continuously-operating non-profits in Austin.
Guest article by Angela Bowers
Coffee + donuts = a great start to any day. While this wasn’t exactly their official motto, what is now a local non-profit called Foundation for the Homeless did in fact begin as a coffee and donuts ministry in downtown Austin.
At first, the organization was an ad hoc program by an interfaith women’s Bible study from West Lake Hills Presbyterian Church. The ministry transformed into coordinating others from the church to give rides to homeless individuals for a warm shower at the church. This sweet beginning grew into the variety of programs offered today. These include Feed My People, the Interfaith Hospitality Network and Best Single Source Plus.
With the help of 200 volunteers and thousands of books, Women’s Storybook Project of Texas connects incarcerated mothers with their children through reading.
Donated books are given to mothers to read aloud. Volunteers record their voices and then deliver the book and tape to the children. This helps bond families dealing with incarceration, and promotes an interest in books and using the imagination.
Though this process may seem straightforward, the reality is far more complicated. I met with the President of Women’s Storybook Project of Texas, Judith Dullnig, to gain insight into how she has grown this generous organization over the past 11 years. [Read more…]
Tucked away in the trees off Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in East Austin stands Austin Wildlife Rescue. This organization provides Texas rehabilitation aid and successful release to Texas wildlife. Started by a group of animal lovers in 1977, Austin Wildlife Rescue has grown to serve over 6,000 animals in 2014 alone. [Read more…]