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Monday, December 22, 2014

A time for gratitude and the spirit of giving

Cresa Washington DC brought ice cream to summer camp, just one partner making a difference!

Written by Daniel Meloy
Senior Director of Development & Communications

Around this time each year, a special feeling begins to take over the DC SCORES office. We’ve wrapped up our fall season, had two exciting nights of our Poetry Slam!, and are preparing for our office to close for the final week of the year. It is the perfect time for us to reflect on the incredible year we’ve had. (Watch for a blog post next week that will highlight 14 great moments of 2014!)

For me, this year-end reflection inevitably turns to our ever-growing team of supporters — individual donors, corporate partners, foundation and government funders, and volunteers; those for whom the spirit of giving abounds throughout the year. Each day I am overwhelmed by and thankful for the generosity of our community.

Some of this year’s highlights for me include…

Our Couch to Camp Campaign, sponsored for the first time by Cresa Washington DC. Cresa not only supported this campaign financially to provide our summer camps free of charge, but Cresa employees served as “Camp Champs” by individually raising funds from their friends, families, and colleagues. Their efforts culminated in bringing ice cream to the campers during the last week of camp.

This year’s SCORE Awards in early May was an evening to remember. With support from sponsors CIT and Volkswagen Group of North America and staging, lighting and sound donated by EventPro, the beautiful Longview Gallery hosted a crowd of 170 DC SCORES supporters to recognize and honor the commitment of our coaches and volunteers — those who are working with our kids every day after school. It was a magical night!

Throughout the year, foundations and community groups make grants to DC SCORES. This year we welcomed several of these to the DC SCORES team, including the Verizon Foundation, the Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church, and the World Bank/Aspen Institute.

Two foundations — the Hattie Strong Foundation and the Corina Higginson Trust — really “upped their game” with DC SCORES and are providing multi-year funding. They joined the DC Trust in making funding commitments on which we can rely in future years.

Our team of individual donors continues to grow, and coming together as a team was no more apparent than just a few weeks ago on Giving Tuesday. More than 300 donations poured into DC SCORES on that day alone, far surpassing any day we’d experienced before.

Our League of Champions (LOC) continues to grow as well. Members of the LOC pledge to contribute at least $1,000 each year for five years, thus providing reliable funding throughout the year for years to come. Nearly 50 LOC members have made this commitment!

I’m also reminded that giving comes in many forms, including the gift of time. DC SCORES volunteers gave more than 5,000 hours of service this year. Wow! From refereeing games to serving on committees to painting faces at our big Jamboree! and Fall Frenzy events, volunteers have been selfless with their time.

I’m grateful for all of our volunteers, but two groups of volunteers are especially important to me — our High Five Tour Ambassadors and our program alumni.

For many people, their first introduction to DC SCORES is through a High Five Tour at our office. Tour Ambassadors invite their friends and colleagues to come learn about our work. They’re constantly promoting DC SCORES and bringing new people to our team.

Our alumni volunteers are also our most passionate. They know first-hand how DC SCORES can change lives and their desire to “give back” is unparalleled. If you’ve ever watched a DC SCORES soccer game and saw a young referee, chances are they were a DC SCORES alumnus. In addition to refereeing, our alumni come to the office to help after school, serve as assistant coaches, and are role models for the younger kids in our program. It is heartwarming to see the spirit of giving in these young people.

During this “season of giving,” I’m giving thanks for the entire DC SCORES team. Without our team of supporters, donors and volunteers, we would not be able to reach so many kids and impact so many lives.

Thank you for being part of our team.


Click here to give the gift of team before the new year! 

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