Friends, It’s July! I can hardly believe how quickly this year has flown by. I hope each of you had fun celebrating the 4th of July yesterday with family and friends! I absolutely love July for so many reasons. July means a hot southern summer. July means swimming. July means cookouts with friends and enjoying the long summer sunlight. July means lots of ice cream. But one of my favorite things about July is that it’s my birthday :)
I love birthdays – the perfect excuse to gather and celebrate with loved ones, and what better reason to set aside some time to reflect upon the past year and start dreaming even bigger for the next. Well, it just so happens that TODAY is my birthday and this weekend I’ll be lucky enough to be spending lots of quality time with family and friends. I can honestly say that every year I can’t imagine being any more grateful or loved…but then it happens. So very lucky and thankful for this life I get to live and the wonderful people I get to share it with.
Youth is happy because it has the ability to see beauty.
Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.
Now onto the real purpose of this post….
Last December at the Engage! conference I met a fun little gal (no really, she is an adorable, pint sized, super fun, amazingly authentic person) and we became fast friends. Her name is Paige Chenault (uber-talented wedding and event planner) We hung out through the welcome evening gala and just as the evening was closing so we could all head to bed for a bit of sleep before day one of the conference, Paige mentions she is one of the speakers and that she will see me in the morning. That evening we shared a little bit about ourselves and our businesses so I naturally assumed she would be speaking about her event planning business…which she did, kind-of. I truly had no idea how much she would touch each and every attendee that next morning with her kind, kind heart. By applying her talents used in her day-to-day event planning business, and with the help of her wonderful community, she has created a movement that is making an impact.
Paige introduced us to her true labor of love – The Birthday Party Project, a non-profit organization she founded. The mission is to bring joy to homeless children through the magic of birthdays. By partnering with homeless shelters, TBPP provides birthday parties and gifts for all their resident children between the ages of one and eighteen. Each birthday kid receives a crown, ribbon, personal cake and a $30.00 gift – the other kids participate in celebrating with activities and cupcakes!
Liene Stevens of Think Splendid!, in a re-cap post of learning about The Birthday Party Project shortly after Engage! said the following that I find to be so true :
“The [second] reason this hits close to my heart is that I am passionate about finding solutions that end the cycle of poverty. Some could argue that The Birthday Party Project isn’t changing much of anything, since it’s not meeting felt needs (food, clothing, shelter, jobs, etc), but I disagree. The cycle of poverty is much more than just finances and economics. It is also tied to access to the arts and education and self-esteem, which cultivates imagination which leads to innovation which leads to long-term change.”
So why am I posting about this today, on my birthday? It’s simple, I would love to get you, friends, involved in this wonderful organization. One of my dear friends and colleagues, Jacin Fitzgerald, kickstarted a pretty cool initiative called Share your Birthday. BRILLIANT!
I would be so appreciative for anyone who loves the meaning behind birthdays and values the mission behind The Birthday Party Project to take a moment and CELEBRATE in sharing my birthday.
If you’re like me and love an excuse to visit a store like Target to peruse the party supply aisle, you can check out their WISH LIST and send items to TBPP to use directly. There is also the option to make a direct DONATION and more! Take a look at the link at the end of the post to find out more information.
Please take a moment and watch this video, I promise it will melt your heart. A table cloth, a $10.00 donation, a few birthday cards, you name it – all will be so very appreciated and the kids will love it!
MY CHALLENGE ::
Now, I am always game for a good challenge…especially if it’s for a good cause. If anyone out there comments below AND emails me (firstname.lastname@example.org) that they have a box full of each and every item listed on the wishlist I will happily skip on over to a party supply store and match it :) Get creative – one person doesn’t have to do all of it, you can coordinate with friends and kind folks in the community to make this happen! This offer stands until July 31st, 2013. I sure hope I’ll get to mail a box full of goodies on August 1st to TBPP office :)
*I will match a box for the first person to complete this…how wonderful would it be if there were many!!
The Birthday Party Project Shirt GIVEAWAY!
For anyone who gives a donation or mails something directly to TBPP, comment below to let me know and on August 1st I will draw a few names to win one of the awesome shirts The Birthday Party Project created – see the image below of me rocking one around town :)
SHARE YOUR BIRTHDAY :: http://www.thebirthdaypartyproject.org/#!shareyourbirthday/c1py5
*IF YOU’RE LOCAL TO RICHMOND, VA and have something you would like donate please email me and I would love to arrange a time pick it up and HUG you in person as a thank you :) This will allow me to ship all local donations together in one happy box!
**If you decide to send in a donation or mail your own package, please do mention it’s for “Sharing Cyn Kain’s Birthday” so I can properly thank you!
For you social media addicts out there…here’s the info you need :
Hashtag for the Share your Birthday initiative :: #shareyourbirthday
Hastag for The Birthday Party Project :: #givingisgood
Follow The Birthday Party Project on twitter :: @bdayenthusiast