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Be Charitable: Quality & Community Service

A Wider Circle is one of my favorite organizations.  Dr. Mark Bergel founded it  in 2001 as a way to help families in Montgomery County, Maryland.   AWC runs several programs including Neighbor-to-Neighbor which provides home goods and furnishing to families transitioning into their own homes.  The families have successfully found places to live, but need some housewarming help.   AWC accepts donations from around the metropolitan Washington, DC area including beds, couches and dressers.  Then they spruce up the items and set up a date for the families to come in and shop for what they need.

On my first visit Mark shared his philosophy of giving clients the best customer service possible.  He emphasized the need to treat everyone with respect.  The AWC staff members echoed his sentiments during orientation and I knew then that I’d found a special place.  They emphasized that donations should be in “dignity condition.”  Dignity is the perfect word to define what we should all do when offering things to others in need.  We shouldn’t give our cast-off, stained, ruined things to others.  We should share things that we would give to members of our own families.  I ask that during this holiday season and anytime we give that we go above and beyond expectations.  I don’t mean quantity – you don’t have to give away millions of dollars to make a difference.

Let’s do better on the quality of our charitable giving.  Instead of sharing your old, raggedy stuff, give away something nice.  Give someone something special, something unique.  Buy something new, make some treats from scratch and give them away.  These little details can make all the difference.  Think QUALITY – be creative, be expressive, be generous!!

Below are three organizations that would love your QUALITY help.  It’s easy to turn a challenging time into a positive experience.  These organizations would appreciate your special efforts to #BeCharitable.  Call them, write them, find out how you can help.

***Please note that I’m the Junior League Washington, Community Partner Liaison for the Done-In-A-Day Committee this year.  Our partners are A Wider Circle and The Capital Area Food Bank.  ***

1) A Wider Circle

They also accept donations online.  This is their 10th year of service!!

Center for Community Service: 
9159-C Brookville Road 
Silver Spring, MD 20910 

Mailing Address: 
4808 Moorland Lane, Ste. 802
Bethesda, MD 20814 

Phone: 301-608-3504
Fax: 301-608-3508

Email: contact@awidercircle.org

Questions about donating furniture? furnish@awidercircle.org

2) Capital Area Food Bank

Another JLW Community Partner.  They have locations in DC, The Obama’s volunteered there over the Thanksgiving holiday. They have a Virtual Food Drive that allows you to participate online. http://www.capitalareafoodbank.org/

645 Taylor Street, NE
Washington, DC 20017

P: (202) 526-5344
F: (202) 529-1767

3) Ronald McDonald House:

You can contribute $50 for a family’s one night stay or sign up to help prepare a home cooked meal. This is the Charleston, SC location, but they have houses nationwide. http://www.rmhcharleston.org/how.php

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Charleston, SC.

81 Gadsden Street
Charleston, SC 29401
Phone: 843-723-7957
Fax: 843-722-2204

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