*This is part of our “Leaders We Love” series. Learn more about it.
I was lucky enough to be part of a group invited to represent The Container Store at a luncheon for one of the wonderful nonprofit organizations we support – Community Partners of Dallas – which provides resources and support to the caseworkers of Dallas County Child Protective Services to help ensure safety and restore hope to abused and neglected children.
The guest speaker was Laura Bush and there I was, seated right in front of the podium.
From the moment that Mrs. Bush stepped up to speak I was totally engaged. How charming, how lovely and how sincere she was. She talked about children that have no one to care for them. Children that grew up with no love, no guidance, no one to tell them how smart, pretty, handsome or talented they are. Children who wear hand me down clothes and have to eat whatever they can find. Children that go to school with no supplies, not even a pencil. I was deeply saddened by this!
She then talked about Child Protective Services and how when a caseworker removes a child from a terrible situation, they take them to the Rainbow Room, where they are outfitted with new clothes, backpacks, school supplies, diapers, shoes, socks – everything they need. In some cases, this is the first time a child gets these things of their own. The children are then placed in a foster home with people who see that they are taken care of, fed good meals and most importantly, are loved.
I have to tell you, as Laura Bush spoke, I felt like she was speaking to me, saying, “Lynda, do something to help!!” For some time I had been thinking, “Am I making a difference with the ways I’m giving back to my community?” At the end of my life I want to be able to say a very affirmative, YES!
After much thought and soul searching, I decided to start a nonprofit organization called “Showers for Blessings.” We partner with local charities and help host shower parties for them! People want to give back to their community – they want to help, but many don’t know where to begin. Plus, both women and men alike love to get together and have fun! So, hosting a “Showers for Blessings” party gives everyone an opportunity to get together for a great cause.
We’ve printed more than 1,000 invitations to date, and it all started with Laura Bush’s motivating words. Great leaders inspire people – and she inspired me!!
Lynda R., General Manager, Fort Worth Store