Our Donors, Our Heroes
When Andrew Farren of St. Petersburg talks about Camp Spirit at Camp Boggy Creek, he tells how it was life changing for him as a child. And last summer, he brought the experience full circle and began volunteering as a counselor.
“I love the spirit of the place and all of the incredible people who volunteer and work there,” Andrew says. “I met some of my best friends through the camp.”
Andrew is one of countless children who had their spirits lifted and lives changed at the Hemophilia Foundation of Greater Florida’s (HFGF’s) Camp Spirit. At camp, kids learn about being part of a special community. They learn they can be anything they want to be. They learn they are not alone. While those takeaways are invaluable, they do come with a price tag. The camp exists because of one reason—donors.
Donors are the true heroes.
Without donors, the Foundation could not exist. The Foundation could not assist members of the bleeding disorders community with financial assistance, nor could it provide social work assistance. HFGF kids couldn’t go to Camp Spirit.
It is important to understand that a contribution to the Foundation is more than keeping programs afloat. While eighty-nine percent of fundraising dollars do go toward supporting programs for Florida’s bleeding disorders community, it’s really about helping someone in need, maybe even saving a life. It’s about being a part of the big picture.
Foundation Executive Director Fran Haynes adds that donations are not limited to just money. Providing in-kind services and volunteering time are just as valuable. Indeed, volunteers make the Foundation tick. The four annual walks would not enjoy the success they have without volunteers. The same goes for the Golf Tournament and the Evening on Broadway.
“We can’t function without them,” Fran says. “That’s the real bottom line.”
Moreover, no volunteer effort is too short or monetary donation too small to make a difference. The ultimate goal is to provide members of the bleeding disorders community with as much assistance as possible.
“If you give five dollars or five hours, it all benefits the community,” Fran says.
For some, giving back to an organization and a community is what life has become.
“I had lost the fear of what others thought, so I decided that I wanted to give back,” says HFGF Board Member Joe Riggs, who attends events, walks and assists with fundraising. “Now I am who I am.”