Fall Newsletter 2019

Nourish and Flourish
 
The member volunteers I work with at Assistance League are continually aiding in the development of students that we encounter each week. We do this in a variety of ways, but it comes down to "we feed, we clothe, we mentor, and we educate." This succinctly describes our many programs that are supported by the Thrift Shop revenue, grants, donors and community donations.

We strive to make our actions and words model each other as we clothe nearly 2,000 students with uniforms and winter coats in our Operation School Bell® store; as we offer a week's worth of groceries to hundreds of families during mobile pantries at area schools; as we mentor and guide young people involved in our Mecklenburg County Teen Court, plus we support the passion to learn by awarding college scholarships.

Member volunteers of Assistance League cultivate and nourish students and we may never know which kindness will take and be an impact in their life. We can create positive experiences, we can believe in them, care about them, and give them the tools and encouragement to know that success in life requires hard work and the willingness to forge ahead despite the overwhelming odds they might face.

So, to you, our friends and neighbors, shoppers and supporters, I ask you to never underestimate the power of planting a seed and cultivating its potential. Your continued support is essential to our organization in so many ways but please know that for each child that is reached by clothing, feeding, mentoring and educating you have a hand in that good deed.


Laura Gallagher
2019-2020
President
Assistance League of Charlotte

Operation School Bell®
Operation School Bell® began in mid-September after months of preparation to clothe 2,000 school children through this program. Elementary school students from Druid Hills Academy kicked off our 24th year of Assistance League's signature program by selecting a new winter coat, uniforms, undergarments, socks and books. Each child also received a hygiene kit which includes basic items such as a toothbrush and toothpaste, comb and brush, body wash, and tissues.
 
One of Assistance League of Charlotte member volunteers serving as a personal shopper witnessed the delighted reaction of a kindergartner named Lupillo being given his hygiene kit. "I can't get over it. You should have seen his face when he opened the hygiene kit. His eyes were as big as saucers."
 
Upon learning these items were his to keep, Lupillo turned to his personal shopper and gave her a grin that warmed her heart. One of the school counselors informed her Lupillo had just arrived in Charlotte from Guatemala. He spoke no English. During the shopping experience, Jonathan, a second-grade student became his translator.
 
We appreciate your contributions to support our community programs like Operation School Bell that make a real difference in children's lives.




Andy Mermans and a young student check over the contents of a hygiene kit she is receiving.  Mr. Mermans is managing director of Merancas Foundation and a long time supporter of this effort to provide new school uniforms and more to at-risk students in our district.

Community Culinary School
 Scholarship Winner

This year's first Community Culinary School of Charlotte (CCSC) student receiving an Assistance League of Charlotte Community Scholarship has been chosen. Her name is Jennifer (Jay) and she is in the 64th class of CCSC.

Jay is from Queens, NY.  She was born in the projects and lost her father when she was young. The third of five children, she spent most of her childhood in and out of foster homes - something she shares freely, because it's part of her story and has shaped her into the hardworking, motivated person she is today.  Her 11 year old daughter names Loyalty is at the center of every decision Jay makes.

Until recently, Jay viewed cooking as a hobby. Now, she craves stability and wants a career with a steady income to provide Loyalty with the things she never had. Although she was accepted to Johnson and Wales, her younger brother Isaiah encouraging her to consider CCSC instead. (Isaiah is a graduate of Class 63!) Jay did her homework, wanting to make sure that her daughter had a stable environment before committing to either school. With the support of Isaiah and a friend, she felt ready to give culinary training her full attention. She chose CCSC because it's affordable and offers hands-on experience to people like her.  

After graduation, Jay hopes to work in a nice uptown restaurant, where the meal is an experience - not just food. She wants to hone her skills and build her credentials to earn the right to be called Chef.

Jay is so appreciative to the Assistance League of Charlotte, whose support is paying for the cost of her training at CCSC.

Join Assistance League of Charlotte

Assistance League of Charlotte is an all volunteer, nonprofit organization whose members are dedicated to helping the children in the Charlotte community.

Assistance League Charlotte is part of a national organization with 120 chapters and over 22,000 members!  

Become a part of an incredible group of member/volunteers who are dedicated to make a difference in our community. 
  
New Member Forms are located on our website or you can email: VPmembership@alclt.org.

Do you or a friend, spouse, etc. belong to a community organization or church that schedules speakers for their meeting? Assistance League has a Speakers Bureau whose goal is to inform the Charlotte community of our organization's mission and accomplishments.  Please contact us at: info@charlotte.assistanceleague.org if you know of such a group.
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