Buzzy's Bees news & updates
June 2022
Summer has come. Sort of. While we notice the temperatures soaring around the nation, the Pacific Northwest continues to be cool and showery -- as in grab your jacket before you head out. We do enjoy the lush green this creates and are grateful for the full reservoirs and rivers. For those who are already sipping tall iced beverages we hope you can find ways to stay cool. In whatever way summer is touching you, we hope you will take a few minutes to put your feet up and read what is going on with Buzzy's Bees. The hive is buzzing!
2022 Golf Tournament Recap
The intermittent rain didn’t dampen our spirits as we gathered to golf in memory of precious children gone too soon on June 4. Sah-Hah-Lee is a beautiful setting, rain or shine! Both the Par 3 course and the Mini golf tournaments were nearly sold out, and some golfers accomplished a full 18 hole plus a full round of mini golf. That made for a long but fun day. Even those who didn’t golf enjoyed circus fun meant for all ages. The cotton candy vendor was kept busy for as long as she was there!

This was Buzzy’s Bees 6th Annual Golf Tournament. Each year during the event we pause to name children whose memory we keep close to our hearts. We added some new families to our hive this year. It is both heartbreaking and a privilege to be able to provide ways to acknowledge the short lives we honor.  

We also want to acknowledge our volunteers. So many helping hands helped create fun for all!
  • Omar Akileh
  • Shallay Booker
  • Alex Causey
  • Amanda Drews
  • Nate Drews
  • Jason Drews
  • Therese Granfelt
  • Mary Jernstrom
  • Amy Kutzkey
  • Loubna Kekhia
  • Mistral Khwaja
  • Jasmin
  • Heather Sadler
  • Julie Schneider
The proceeds from the golf event are still being tallied and will all be used to support bereaved families. We invite you to join us in this mission. Please consider a donation to Buzzy’s Bees today. We hope you can join us next spring for the 7th Annual Golf Tournament!
Check out this recap video produced by one of our sponsors, Left Mind Media!
Sprinkles of rain doesn't stop golfing fun
Amanda hanging out with our lovely volunteers
Julie keeps the carnival games going
Finally, thank you to our 2022 golf tournament sponsors! We are so grateful for their participation and which truly helps make this day possible.
Program Updates
Financial Gifts
Buzzy's has recently gifted financial support to four additional families. One was to a mother in Hawaii who lost her 2-year-old child in a murder-suicide. Another was to a family in Baton Rouge, Louisiana whose child was born still. Two were families whose children died of SIDS -- a 2-month-old in Texas and a child in Michigan who died days before his first birthday. Most of these families are using the gift to pay for funeral expenses, and one let us know that they will pay some outstanding utility bills as well as provide food and clothing for their surviving siblings. Our hearts are with these families as they mourn. If you know of a family who could use some financial support, please let us know through this application.
Give Grief a Voice
The 2022 Give Grief a Voice season is drawing to a close. Many stories are complete as is some of the art. Like last year, our families are spread throughout the US and Canada. Almost all of this year’s interviews were conducted via Zoom which offers an obvious convenience, but it’s not without its challenges.

We’re proud to serve 13 families again in 2022. Our creatives continue to produce exceptionally high quality writing and art work. We all look forward to the families seeing their art pieces for the first time on September 24 in Portland. We hope to see you there as well. Stay tuned for event details!
Peer Support Group - D.U.B.S.
Our DUBS (Dedicated Universal Bereavement Support) program has launched! If you are interested in joining a support group with other adults who have been impacted by the unexpected death of a child, please reach out to Our evening meetings are held in-person in Hillsboro on the 2nd Tuesday and online on the 4th Thursdays each month.
Gallery Tour - coming to the Portland area soon!
You may have already heard, Buzzy’s was awarded its first ever grant from the Regional Arts & Culture Council (RACC) this year! RACC provides financial support to nonprofit organizations in Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas counties in Oregon. RACC’s grant to Buzzy’s will partially fund a 5 stop tour of our art in public spaces. Our objective is to change grief culture in the United States by normalizing conversations about child loss. To that end, we intend to display high quality reproductions of the art work previously gifted to our Give Grief a Voice families.

The Art Gallery subcommittee has spent these past several months identifying potential venues for displaying our pieces and reaching out to confirm their willingness and availability. We’ve also been working to plan our public outreach efforts and develop our marketing materials. 

As of this writing, we have confirmed all five of our grant funded stops!

The Northeast Community Center in Portland is the first stop for our tour and will host our exhibit from July 1-July 31 this summer through their Art in the Lobby program. 

Cerimon House in Portland is the second stop of our tour. We will display our pieces from September 1 through October 31, and it’s here that we intend to host this year’s Give Grief a Voice Art Reveal event on September 24, 2022. For those of you who are newish to our organization, the Art Reveal event is when this year’s families are gifted their art. In fact, it’s the very first time families get to see the pieces their selected artists have been creating all season.

Our next three stops will take place in 2023 and are located at regional public libraries. Wilsonville Public Library will host our exhibit in February 2023. West Linn Library will host our pieces in March 2023, and we’re still finalizing our dates with the Hillsboro Library.  

Stay tuned for more information so that you can plan your visit to our first of its kind Give Grief a Voice traveling art exhibit.
Art Salon
Buzzy’s Bees tried something new this spring. We held a ‘this-is-not-a-fundraiser’ event for donors, supporters, and industry professionals in Seattle. The idea was simply to invite people to experience the Give Grief a Voice project off screen. Held on a Thursday evening at a tea shop in Ballard, invited guests were surrounded by several artwork reproductions and experienced the magic of the program. 

Over 40 people attended (our goal was 25!) and even before the first person walked through the door the event was a slam-dunk success! The invitation provided an opportunity to reach out to organizations and people involved in the local grief space who we hadn’t previously had a connection to. We heard from a number of our donors that being in the room with the art and reading the excerpts provided a deeper understanding of our project and mission.

If there are other Buzzy’s supporters who might want to host an Art Salon for their network of people, please reach out to Julie Schneider at
New Board Member - Kelly Tilford
Earlier this year we welcomed a new member to our board! Kelly Tilford first joined the Buzzy’s Bees hive as a Give Grief a Voice committee volunteer in 2021, handling key details of family communication and eventually becoming our project manager. She is also active on the Outreach and Development Committees. An attorney, Kelly has always been interested in the nonprofit sector. She’s enthusiastic about governance and strategy. So much so that her nickname at her last position was “Bylaws.” Welcome, Kelly!
Volunteer Spotlight - Alex Causey
This quarter we're pleased to highlight our volunteer Alex Causey. Alex leads our DUBS - Dedicated Universal Bereavement Support program. When relocating to Portland she had hopes of finding a peer group, similar to the safe casual meeting space she created and ran for two years in Kitsap, WA. She created that group after unexpectedly losing her son, Aiden, at 3 years old. Since something similar didn't exist yet in the Portland area, she and Amanda began working together to create one.

Alex's can-do approach to life and willingness to jump in vibes well with our volunteer-run organization and she has taken to wearing several additional hats at Buzzy's Bees! She recently contributed to our Outreach committee's efforts to spread word about our program by representing Buzzy's Bees at the SUDC Family Gathering in Texas. She also contributed to the success of our golf tournament by volunteering on that planning committee. Soon, she'll be taking on the role as our Affiliate Fundraising Lead - helping to coordinate fundraising efforts like AmazonSmile, BottleDrop, restaurant dine-to-give nights, Fred Meyer Rewards, and other shopper events. Thank you, Alex! We are so grateful to have you as part of the team.
Information Connections
Connecting our community to additional grief and loss resources to help navigate this rugged terrain. We have recently found the following to share.
  • We at Buzzy's know grief is complex, and often very isolating. Carol Smith, who suddenly lost her seven-year-old son ten years ago, shared her experience with grief in this article for the Washington Post, and how the recently recognized prolonged grief disorder helped her put a name to the grief she continues to feel, and made her feel less alone.
  • What's Your Grief? has recently posted two wonderful articles about identifying and processing the effects of grief on the mind, on the body, and in everyday life. A Deep Dive into Secondary Loss defines the other losses people experience beyond the loss of the a person, losses that are often difficult to articulate to others. Yoga for Grief by therapist Kiri Meyer explains the physical and mental benefits of yoga in dealing with grief.
  • Bo's Place, a fellow non-profit, gave their thoughts on the often conflicting time of spring and summer break on grieving families, and how families can create new meaning and healing during those times while honoring the memory of their loved one.
Thoughts from our Blog
In case you missed it, here are some recent posts on our blog.
  • We posted our 2021 efforts from Give Grief a Voice over on our blog. Check out the Stories and Art created for thirteen families who shared their stories with us in memory of the children they have lost.
  • Buzzy's Board Updates: We said farewell to beloved board member Nicole Smith and welcomed two new members -- Amy Kutzky and Kelly Tilford!
  • 6 Years Ago: Congratulations to Amanda Drews for graduating from Pacific University with a Bachelor of Social Work! She shared with us the complex emotions of graduating 6 years to the day she buried Hudson, and her continued resolve to help bereaved families.
Additional Ways to Support Buzzy's Bees
Volunteer Opportunities - Giving your time and talents
If you are looking to get involved with Buzzy's Bees, we are always happy to match your interests, available time, and specific talents with one of our standing committees. Please get in touch! Sometimes folx are looking for a defined role, in which case, here are a couple of opportunities to consider:

Communications Committee Member - contact Amanda Drews
Our communications committee could use another person or two with a passion for telling our story. We meet once a month virtually, and in the interim we could especially use your help to pass along language and updates to our GoogleAds contractor. Join us!

IT Support - contact Julie Schneider
Have you noticed that our emails are .com even though we are a .org website? Do you have the IT talent to help us transition our email addresses to the new domain? We could use your help!

Travel Partner Lead - contact Amanda Drews
We hope to offer flight and hotel to the families traveling to attend the Give Grief a Voice Reveal Event. Also, in non-Covid times, we fly our writers for interviews all over the US. Several airlines have programs to be able to accept miles transfers from donors. Also, we wonder about available bereavement discounts. Are you someone who can help us navigate the travel system and get these discounts and miles programs in place? Perhaps then rinse-and-repeat with hotel points?
Giving Partners
Thank you for your ongoing support through matching and other programs. Check these options:
  • AmazonSmile - We can receive proceeds as you shop through Amazon. Set up Buzzy’s Bees as your charity of choice at
  • Benevity – A matching program through your employer (ie Google, Microsoft, Nike, etc)
  • BottleDrop - We are a registered non-profit with Oregon's BottleDrop and can receive proceeds from your donated cans and bottles! If you want to participate or have any further questions please reach out to Alex at
  • Fred Meyer Community Rewards - In addition to receiving personal rewards you can link your customer card to Buzzy’s Bees at Fred Meyer Community Rewards
  • Thrivent Choice Dollars - If you have an insurance or annuity contract with Thrivent you may have Choice Dollars to designate. Check it out at under the My Thrivent heading.  
Grief does not discriminate. Buzzy’s Bees strives to support a broad and diverse community of grieving families.