When I first decided to launch Southern Sunday, I knew it had to be more than just an online boutique. I wasn’t satisfied with the idea of it merely being a place for people to shop for a cute top or fun dress. Having worked for a non-profit in the past, I’ve seen firsthand the difference community involvement and fundraising efforts in all capacities can make for an organization. Wanting to apply those same principles into my new venture, the concept for the website was born. While it will continue to be a work in progress as the business grows and evolves, the commitment to supporting important causes will never change. The following charities will be available for selection through the end of 2017, with the options then changing every quarter going forward.
St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital has been a leader in the treatment and prevention of childhood cancer for decades. At the risk of getting too personal, this is a subject that hits close to home for members of my family. My father had a brother who passed away from brain tumor at the age of four and I’ve often wondered how our lives may be different if a facility like St. Jude’s had been available at that time.
I’ll be honest and admit that until I started researching, I was unaware of the full extent of services that the Red Cross offers. I knew of their vast disaster relief network and blood drive program but that was about it. It’s been amazing to learn of the countless classes and training they offer for emergency situations, that they’ve installed almost one million smoke alarms in homes and offer mental and physical health consultations. While I have been extremely blessed in that I have not needed the services that the Red Cross offers so far in my life, it’s wonderful knowing they are there for those that need them most.Being in second period English class my sophomore year of high school, I’ll never forget watching the events of 9/11 unfold. It’s incredible to think of the way that lives were forever changed that day and the many selfless acts performed by the first responders then and military members since. The Wounded Warrior Project offers services to the veterans and their families that suffer from the physical and mental effects of war related to their service from 9/11 to the present. With over half a million servicemen and women being affected in the time since that fateful day, the value of the programs they offer is immeasurable.
Being a horse person for the better part of my life, I’ve experienced firsthand the positive effects being on a farm can have on a person’s well-being. That is one thing that led me to select GreenHouse17 as the first local charity available for customers to choose. Victims of domestic violence are given a safe haven on their forty acre farm with opportunities to receive counseling and learn new life skills, helping them to get the best new start possible. One in three women and one in four men in the United States experience intimate partner abuse or violence in their lifetime, making this an issue that can hit close to home to nearly everyone. If we can start with helping those near to us, then reaching the goal of helping all is that much closer.
I’ve received so much amazing support in the launching of Southern Sunday and am excited that we will all be able to support these amazing organizations together.