I truly believe that it is very important to give back and to volunteer. We lead busy lives with our families, jobs and friends and sometimes we don’t realize that helping one another is part of the equation. This past year I was lucky to be part of an incredible organization in Miami Shores which is a chapter of the Woman’s Cancer Association of the University of Miami.
I was co-president, together with Tammy Austin and what we achieved as a group is nothing short of amazing. Before I tell you about our achievements, let me tell you a little about The Miami Shores Heidi Hewes Chapter of the WCA.
We’re a small group of men and women and meet the first Wednesday of every month at 7:30 PM at one of the members’ homes. We discuss upcoming events and fundraisers, have some hors d’oeuvres provided by the host of the meeting and share a nice time together. There is also a junior membership for kids 12 and older. This past year, we raised over $120,000 which will go directly to cancer research!
We had our annual WCA luncheon on Thursday where we presented a president’s report with the organization’s achievements for the year. It seems that a lot of residents know about the Heidi Hewes Chapter, but they don’t know what we do – so here’s a summary:
- “Lemonade Kids” This was a fabulous day in August in which the children of Miami Shores joined together to host lemonade stands around the community. It was HOT, but fun and our children raised over $1600 selling lemonade in just over four hours. Soprano’s by the Shores hosted a pizza party for the children following and it was a great day. We look forward to our junior membership making this a tradition in Miami Shores.
- In October our chapter was the beneficiary of the money raised at the Miami Country Day School “Walk for Cancer,” a 5K Walk through Miami Shores. Many of our members attended this event and it was geared toward the support of Harry Greenberg and MCDS Senior that was stricken with Osteosarcoma just prior to the walk. Harry has been a member of the committee for the past four years The Walk was named after him and generated tremendous support from his family and the community. We are proud to be the beneficiary of almost $100,000 from MCDS in the fight against cancer.
- Our main fundraiser was the “16th Annual Holiday Walk” in the village of Miami Shores We opened up five beautiful homes that were decorated for the holidays. Including sponsorship monies, ticket sales and memorials our chapter netted a record of over $30,000.
- We participated in Birdies for Charity golf fundraising event and the Bloomingdale’s charity event.
- We contributed regularly at each meeting with Birthday Dollars for the Silver Lady Fund with assist indigent cancer patients by giving them a small stipend each month to help pay for expenses not covered by clinics.
- We visited the hospital in March and provide toiletry items to the cancer patients at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center each year.. The patients are always touched and pleased by the visit.
- We participated in Unity Day in Miami Shores. Our Lemonade Kids were in attendance again this year. In addition, we educated the public regarding various cancers by providing pamphlets. Gave away bubbles, pencils, candy. This is always was a wonderful community event.
- The Bargain Box (WCA thrift store) continues to be a great addition to our fundraising efforts. We would like to offer a special thanks to our members that continue to contribute and encourage their neighbors to contribute. The Heidi Hewes Chapter raised almost $12,000.
- It has been great to see the chapter grow this year. All of the members contributed to the total success.
The Heidi Hewes Chapter was proud to present a check to the Woman’s Cancer Association of the University of Miami for $122,849.98.
Talk about something to make our members and community proud! We are always looking for new members, so please call me or e-mail me if you are interested in joining. It’s not only a great way to give back and volunteer, but it’s a great way to meet new people if you are relocating to Miami.