Still Alive...

I realized it's been more than a week since I wrote anything here.

With the holiday weekend and the subsequent digging out/catching up from that, I've been very busy here in the blue office.

But time for some updates on a few things and what's occupying my time and head-space.

1. The major capital grant. We didn't get a "yes" or a "no" -- rather the committee tabled our request until we can come back with some more information in August. Round two of meetings for this is beginning next week as we meet with some other vendors and get some new quotes on furniture and construction pricing.

2. Being a United Way agency.
Yesterday we attended our first ever United Way agency fair for a campaign through the local office of a major company. We learned a lot through this first one and talking to other agencies also there. This is an exciting way to get our story out into the community.
Also, in two weeks, I've got training to learn how to be a United Way Torchbearer. This basically means that I will be giving short speeches at United Way campaign events, talking about Starfish and how being a United Way agency helps us. And it gets me out of the blue office... I hope they schedule me a lot. One of my goals for 2008 was to help coordinate our first year as a United Way agency and I'm doing a lot of scheduling right now to make this all happen.

3. "Raising the Roof on graduation rates: 48 mentors in 48 hours"
More info coming on this soon, but we're planning a crazy event here at Starfish to recruit more mentors. It involves our mentor services director, our roof and lots of PR.

4. 3.5 months of service left. YIPES. This year has flown by. Yesterday at the United Way fair, there were several other VISTAs and/or VISTA alums. It's fun to meet them and talk about doing service.

5. Grants, grants, grants. The deadlines don't stop coming and next week, I'm taking two days to do a proposal writing workshop put on by the Fundraising School. Obviously, I've been having some success at this writing thing, but I'm convinced I can always learn more things to make my proposals even better.

6. Dictionary Drive. Have $20? For that, you can buy a dictionary and thesaurus set for Starfish scholar who otherwise doesn't have reference books to help them with their school work. Maybe it's just the writer in me coming through, but I love this campaign and can't wait to get these letters in the mail to donors. I know I don't make much as a VISTA, but I am giving serious thought to donating a set because it means that much to me.

As you can see, there's a lot going on. I will try to update more on some of these initiatives/campaigns as I can.

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