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BY SCOTTIE TAYLOR IVERSONCOMMUNITY EDITOR
Linda Holloway, Sharron Brandrup and Marge Utne founded the nonprofit Rainbow Bridge 25 years ago that later became Bessie’s Hope, a living legacy to Linda’s grandmother, Bessie “Granny” Stephens, because of her tragic experience in a nursing home. The recent Bridge of Love Gala keeps part of that original name and raises funds to bring generations together – especially matching at-risk youth with elders who might not otherwise have a visitation. Shockingly, 60 percent of nursing home residents receive no one-on-one visits.
There was plenty of Texas spirit at the Marriott DTC. Linda’s 91-years-young mom, Peggy Shelton (Bessie’s daughter), was in from Wichita Falls. Sharron attended Texas Wesleyan. Both honoree Pat Robinson and presenting sponsor LaFawn Biddle are Texas natives.
“My mother spent 13 years in a nursing home,” said honoree Pat. “We need to remember the forgotten.” The program was packed with touching testimonials and entertainment. Student Emily was thrilled to be a young visitor to the “treasure homes” and Don, said of his fellow residents: “When they see the children, their eyes light up.”
Doug Tisdale called the elders “age advantaged.”
Linda Holloway sang a moving song written by her grandmother, but through her called “Remember me the way I was; but love me the way I am.” Gayle Novak, Ms. Senior America belted out her winning number from Mamma Mia with Crystal River. Then there was dancing to Homeslice Band. Because Gayle Novak was Ms. Colorado Senior in 2018, Lori Adams is Ms. Colorado Senior 2019 and on the committee and Linda Holloway was Ms. Colorado Senior 2008, there were many former pageant winners on hand to assist making the evening a warm and beautiful success. Bessie’s Hope won a National Points of Light Award and Generations United Program of Distinction Award.
CONTRIBUTED BY TERRI FISHER
Our Gala is the premier annual event supporting Colorado’s largest center dedicated to comprehensive multiple sclerosis care, support, education and research. This is your chance to secure your sponsorship presence and ensure benefits leading up to the Gala.
MS is a progressive and unpredictable disease of the central nervous system that disrupts communication between the brain and other parts of the body. Thanks to the generous support of our community, the Rocky Mountain MS Center has created a world-leading model for treating patients and families living with MS, no matter where they are on their MS journey.
Support from our community has sustained us through 40 years, and is vital to the continued success of our mission. We hope you will join us as a Sponsor for this year’s Gala, and we look forward to seeing you on September 14, 2019.
For table purchases please contact Sarah 303-788-4030, x111.
Save the date! Join us Sat., Sept. 14, 2019 for a night of music, dancing, casino gaming, live comedy and more!
CONTRIBUTED BY GoFundMe
On Sunday, July 7, Brandon Campbell passed away after a battle with Stage 4 Colon Cancer. He was a warrior, a husband, and a father.
Amidst the grief, Brady, his 6 year-old son decided to host a lemonade stand. He sold to neighbors and friends. After a local police officer stopped by to figure out what the gathering was, he placed a radio call to other first responders. Firetrucks and police cars started rolling up to the stand and he raised $244. That night he told Amanda, his mom, he wanted to take her on a date with his money and do something to honor his Dad. It was the ultimate “life gives you lemons” story from a child who has suffered an incredible loss.
We’re offering this as a virtual lemonade stand. At age 6, Brady honored everything Brandon wished for in his legacy- that his family was lovingly together and that he could help others.
We will use a small portion of the funds raised for Brady and Amanda to continue having adventures (and dates) together. We will use the rest to honor the Palliative Care Team and Cancer Center at University of Colorado Anschutz. Even in Brandon’s darkest days fighting cancer, he still believed in honoring the people who serve as cheerleaders and advocates for those struggling.
A celebration of Brandon’s life was held on July 13 at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, Colorado on July 13. A separate service will be held in his native Alberta, Canada at a later date.
He was a wonderful father and husband. We would be grateful if you would support his legacy with a little virtual lemonade!
To donate to the campaign, www.gofundme.com/f/bradys
CONTRIBUTED BY CHANGE THE TREND
World renowned author of “Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion” and “Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship,” founder Fr. Greg Boyle, S. J. of Homeboy Industries, is coming to Colorado to address Change the Trend, a collaborative effort working to mobilize and equip the Englewood, Littleton and Sheridan communities to constructively engage the issue of homelessness. Come and hear the stories of compassion and kinship and transformation.
The event will be held on Friday, August 9 from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Englewood High School Auditorium, 3800 S. Logan St., Englewood.
Change the Trend aims to create pathways towards stability for those experiencing homelessness in the tri-cities of Englewood, Littleton, and Sheridan. The organization supports each individual on their journey to self-sufficiency and sustainability. Change the Trend is a collaborative effort of multiple agencies in the Tri-cities. The long term goal is to make strides in housing support and provide access to basic needs such as laundry services and showers.
This event is free and open to the public. RSVP required. Registration to RSVP coming soon.
For more information on the event, including sponsorship opportunities, visit www.changethetrend.org, or call Shari Leonard at (720) 329-8764.
CONTRIBUTED BY BESSIE’S HOPE
The Bridge of Love Gala, What, When, Where: Bessie’s Hope celebrates its 25th Anniversary at their Bridge of Love Gala on Saturday, August 17 at the Marriott DTC. Silent Auction, complimentary wine and chamber music begin at 5:30; gourmet dinner with wine at 7:00, followed by Live Auction and presentations; 8:30, dancing to the 9-piece sensational “Homeslice Band”. The Community Angel Award recipient this year is Pat Robinson, supporter of Bessie’s Hope from the beginning, when the organization was known as Rainbow Bridge. Former Honorable Mayor Doug Tisdale and Ms. Senior America, Gayle Novak will co-emcee. Go to bessieshope.org or call 303-830-9037 to make your reservations!
The Work of Bessie’s Hope: Across the country, over 60% of nursing home elders receive NO personal visitors. As a second grader told Bessie’s Hope, “They deserve friends…just like we do!”
Bessie’s Hope is a rare nonprofit, addressing this sad statistic with proactive solutions. Last year, the organization served just under 2,000 elders in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. During its 25 years, Bessie’s Hope has served over 50,000 elders and youth of all ages, many of whom are from “at-risk” groups and residential treatment centers for teens with behavioral issues. Not only is Bessie’s Hope filling a void in the lives of many forgotten elders, it’s transforming the lives of so many youth. Both populations feel valued and needed by the other.
Bessie’s Hope has won two prestigious national awards, one from Generations United as a “Program of Distinction,” and the other, the “Points of Light Award.” Key to the organization’s high-quality intergenerational work are the education and training, so that youth and adult volunteers can have comfortable, meaningful interaction with elders of all cognitive functioning levels.
At the core of Bessie’s Hope are compassion, empathy and respect. In addition to the youth volunteer program, Bessie’s Hope provides the same education and facilitation for adult groups, families and individuals. There is a program just right for you, your family, church, club or workplace, and there’s an elder waiting just for you!
This winter, through the Bessie’s Hope “Dreams Can Still Come True Program”, May Alm, a 103-yr. old decorated WWII Army nurse and former avid skier, took to the slopes again. In our culture, where there is often the notion that the older a person becomes, the less they become, the youth at Bessie’s Hope know that the opposite is true: the older a person becomes, the more they become. Ageism is eradicated within Bessie’s Hope Land, where the elders are recognized as resources of vast knowledge and wisdom from that which comes only with time—life experiences.
In their 25th year, Bessie’s Hope has launched another solution, this time for another societal issue, the critical shortage of workers in long term care. High school students explore the many jobs and career paths within geriatrics and long term care through the “School-to-Career Work Force Development for Long Term Care Initiative.” Because the Bessie’s Hope youth demonstrate a respect and empathy for the elders and enjoy spending time with them, it just made sense to the Bessie’s Hope co-founders to introduce these compassionate youth to the idea of a career that serves their “Grandfriends”. At the youth visits, available 7 days/nights a week, you’ll see the youth intently listening to the wonderful stories of another era. The ripple effect of Bessie’s Hope strengthens the very fabric of our society. A high school girl remarked, “It’s amazing how easy it is to make the elders so happy.”
For information about the Bridge of Love Gala or about getting involved with the work, call 303-830-9037 or visit www.bessieshope.org.
CONTRIBUTED BY CASA
After much planning and anticipation, on July 8, the Court Appointed Special Advocates offices moved from the Adams County Justice Center to the Adams County Human Services Center located at 11860 North Pecos Street, Suite 2700 in Westminster.
CASA has gratefully utilized donated office space in the Adams County Justice Center for the past 19 years. However, several factors made this space unsustainable as we move forward. We are continuing to grow as we work toward the goal of serving every child in need, and we have filled our current offices to capacity. In addition, the courthouse staff is also expanding, so not only could they not provide us additional space, but they also need the space we currently occupy to accommodate their own growth.
As these limitations became ever more apparent, Board Chair Bob Grant, Board Vice-Chair Donna Alengi, and I began discussions with Adams County leadership to identify a suitable option for CASA. To their credit and with our appreciation, our Adams County partners never questioned whether they would provide space, just what space it would be. When they planned and constructed the Adams County Human Services Center, they brought all of the counties’ human services to one location. Recognizing that many community non-profits support the same residents, they also included square footage for these non-profits to have office space in the new building. The Community Partners Space on the main level at the eastern end is where CASA will be housed.
After the move, the CASA office will maintain satellite offices at both the Adams County Justice Center and Broomfield Combined Courts for our staff and CASA Volunteers to utilize when they are attending court. Our Broomfield office has not moved, and our Adams County satellite office will be located in one of our current locations on the first floor of the courthouse immediately to the right of the entrance foyer. Phone numbers for staff changed effective July.The full list of staff members and their new extensions/contact informations listed on their website (www.casa17th.org).
In conjunction with Adams County Human Services, an open house of the new space will be held in the coming weeks. The date is to be determined.
One out of three babies born today will have diabetes during his or her lifetime. Families and individuals are encouraged to contribute toward research for a cure and care by signing up for the 5K Run and Walk, including a kid’s fun run. The event is slated for Saturday, August 3 at the Barbara Davis Center, 1775 Aurora Court, Aurora 80045. Pre-registration is $30. and the cost will be $40. on the day of the event. Check -in is at 7:00 a.m. with the race starting at 8:00 a.m. Kids Zone also begins at 8:00 a.m. Proceeds support The Guild of Children’s Diabetes Foundation. For further information: 303-863-1200 or sign up at: www.RunSignUp.com/RunfortheRing.
CONTRIBUTED BY COLORADO FARM BUREAU FOUNDATION
Colorado’s neighbors in Nebraska will soon receive a $20,000 donation from the Colorado Farm Bureau Foundation to help with disaster relief after devastating storms and flooding hit the state in March.
“While Colorado braced for impact from the ‘Bomb Cyclone,’ it was really our friends in Nebraska that suffered massive damage,” said Don Shawcroft, President of the Colorado Farm Bureau. “Hearing of ranchers unable to get to their cattle, flooded fields, and demolished silos, sprinklers, and barns was truly heartbreaking.”
The $20,000 donation will go to the Nebraska Farm Bureau’s Disaster Relief Fund where 100 percent of the donations will be distributed to Nebraska farmers, ranchers and rural communities affected by the disaster.
According to the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, more than 20 percent of the state’s gross domestic product comes from agriculture and some officials estimated the industries lost about $1 million a day during the worst of the floods. The disaster caused significant livestock deaths, severe damage to infrastructure and feed sources as well ass total disruption to planting, impacting next year’s crops.
The Colorado Farm Bureau Foundation will continue to accept donations to add to this fund. Please note Disaster Fund-NE Flood in the memo line on the check. Cash and checks can be sent to:
Colorado Farm Bureau Foundation. Attn: Disaster Fund, 9177 E. Mineral Circle, Centennial, CO 80112
2018 All Rights Reserved. Villager Publishing |