Friday, January 22, 2010


I had the most amazing experience this past Tuesday night. I was able to meet a group of local Minnesota bloggers. Forty bloggers (38 women and 2 brave men) met up for a night of networking and volunteering.

(This blog is my personal blog, but I work as an editor for the Hazelden blog called "Recovery Resource Blog," so I attended as the Hazelden blogger because I'm still insecure about telling people I'm a blogger. The other bloggers at the event gave me great advice and I know that I have some great blogs that I can follow and learn from.) 

Missy, the event organizer, is a former Hazelden co-worker and an incredible example of a successful blogger. (The Marketing Mama) She's built up a strong following by being a consistent blogger, talking about something she loves and sharing what she knows.

Following the social time, we headed over to "Feed My Starving Children" in Eagan.  Missy set up this volunteer opportunity for our group weeks ago, so none of us knew that we would be working with a charity that is providing assistance to Haiti as they are coping with the aftermath of the earthquake.

The FMSC staff member introduced us to their work by showing us a picture of Omar, an 8-year-old boy who weighed 19 pounds when he came to the FMSC-supported mission in Haiti. Think about that 8 years old and weighing only 19 pounds! The staff showed us another picture of Omar after a few weeks receiving meals from the mission - healthier and looking more like an 8 year old. The biggest difference: There was a smile on his face! In the "before" picture, his eyes and expression were distant.

The volunteers put together food packets that consisted of rice, soy, dried vegetables and dried ground chicken. We put together 64 boxes of packets that will provide 13,824 meals. That will feed 38 people for one year. The cost of the materials for the packets was $2300.(I doubt I could feed just me for $2300 for a year)

FMSC relies on donors to help pay for this program and, I for one, will be someone who will keep this program high on my list of charities to support by sharing financially and with my time. (I'll be telling EVERYONE I see that the best volunteer project/service project or team building project they could do is volunteering at FMSC)
Below, I've linked to some of the other bloggers who write about this experience. (Most expressing the impact of the evening far better than me.) I'll work on getting my pictures off my iPhone and get them posted here, but there are some great photos on these blogs.

Random Thoughts of a Lutheran Geek (Liz does a great job of sharing the numbers that made such an impact on us.
Kate in the Kitchen (I could read her post over and over again!)


darcie said...

It was an amazing night wasn't it? And such a small world!
I look forward to doing more stuff like this in the future...Such a great opportunity to give back!

The Marketing Mama said...

So glad you were able to attend, it was great seeing you again. The event was just fabulous and I loved every minute of it. :)

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