Written by: Helen Miner, activities director –
Posted: January 27, 2016 –
By 11:05 a.m., staff and Residents alike were lined up to get a piping hot bowl of homemade chili.
Today was our Resident Council chili fundraiser, with all the proceeds being donated to help retired veterans. The ingredients for the chili (my own family recipe) were prepared by a few Residents earlier on, and I enlisted the help of Resident Helen Linzer to put them all together to make a big batch.
The idea started a few years ago at a Resident Council meeting, when the topic of conversation was about “paying it forward.” The attendees said that they were so grateful for all they had at St. Mary’s, but realized that there were other people who have much less than they do. That day, the group started brainstorming ideas to help raise funds to help the charities with missions that are close to their hearts.
Our first fundraiser helped “Operation Smile,” which provides life changing surgeries for children suffering from cleft lips or palates. It was so successful that we were able to fund a complete surgery for a child in need. Since then the Residents have hosted other fundraisers for various organizations. Once they’ve selected an organization, we then discuss what the menu should be; hot dogs, tacos, chili, etc. Then comes the budgeting; how much the ingredients will cost, how much we’ll need. I take the list and head to the grocery store, picking up precise amounts of everything. The Residents are excited to help with the meal preparation, many with a love of cooking.
By 1:30 p.m., everyone was satisfied because their stomachs were full and they were happy knowing the efforts were going towards a great cause!