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Day 216: Great Mom’s that Give: Part 2 We aren’t all Sarah McLachlan

Yesterday, I started my special 5 part “Great Mom’s that Give” series in honour of Mother’s Day with super star Mother, Sarah McLachan. Not every mother is a rock star nor has the ability to set up a personal Foundation but it doesn’t mean we don’t all have the ability to do something in our busy lives. This next Mom happens to be my sister-in-law. She wanted to send me a guest post as she had consciously been trying to give more in her life. Her post came timely this week and I wanted to share it. Cat is like me, the every day Mom. She has two young kids, she works and tries to do it all every day. There are times we can give more and times we cannot but we can all find some time to give. This is a great idea for many of us already with children. Truly a gift to give another parent!

Day 216: Give 216 by Catherine Vaugh

Hello GIVE enthusiasts! Thanks to Jacqueline’s blog, I have been inspired to have more charity and giving in my life.  Here is my GIVE story to share with all of you.

The Inspiration

My husband and I recently re-located to London, Ontario from my hometown of Barrie, Ontario.  Much of my family still live in Barrie so I am still deeply rooted and connected with my hometown and the people I love that are there. In April 2010, my Aunt Ange was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer and was scheduled to have the significant growth removed the first week of May.  My Aunt is only 40 years old, is a stay at home of three young children, and I knew she would have a tough road ahead of her.  I felt helpless as I was 6 months pregnant, a mother to a 16 month old boy, trying to sell our home in Barrie, and working to physically and mentally prepare for our move to London.  There wasn’t much I was able to do for her with my own chaos to be managed, but I vowed to myself then that I would do everything in my power to help later on.

The Give
My Aunt Ange endured two major surgeries and five months of chemotherapy and was declared cancer free in February of this year.  When we got the call about Ange being cancer free, we were thrilled.  Most people would think that now the cancer drama was over with, there is no need to help them now.  However, I have never been more compelled to assist them. My GIVE is the gift of re-connecting.  When a couple is enduring a serious illness, you do what you need to do to survive.  You put your head down and push through to get to the other side, which is exactly what my aunt and uncle did.  They had lots of help from their friends and family from the time Aunt Ange was diagnosed up until she was declared cancer free.  Now it is my turn to step in to provide them with the one thing that was threatened – time together with each other!  This weekend, my aunt and uncle are dropping the kids off in London to spend Saturday night with me and my family. Chris and Ange will then depart to attend a concert for one my Aunt Ange’s favourite bands, have a good meal and a good night’s sleep in a fancy hotel.  24 hours – just the two of them – spending time together, re-connecting.  It is the perfect GIVE for them.

I have lots of fun activities planned for my full house this weekend – a hike on the Thames River trail, make-your-own-pizza dinner, and a mini-soccer game in my back yard.  Not only do I get to GIVE my aunt and uncle a chance to re-connect, I am getting a chance to re-connect with my cousins too.

Financial Cost = $0 (nothing extra spent as I have to buy groceries anyways, right?)
Time Spent = 24 hours
Re-connecting = PRICELESS!

What people are saying about 365give

“I wanted to express my gratitude for the teaching you provided today. Your message was delivered eloquently, compassionately, and without judgment. The kids were engaged, and now have knowledge with which they can change the world. We all appreciated how you took the time to help us learn to build positive mindsets and practice happiness.”
Shelley Gardner, Grade 6 Ridgeview Elementary (West Vancouver)
“Actions really do speak louder than words, which is why I believe the 365give Challenge has resonated throughout my community. Every give we do is so important to us and leaves us happier and appreciating our lives a little bit more than before.”
Mahina Niyozova (Tajikistan)
“After watching the 365give TEDx Talk, I was inspired to join and begin a daily giving program in India. Today, along with 12 other volunteer women, we provide 100 meals to local underprivileged children in Bangalore for school every day.”
Deepika Ahuja, Mom (Bangalore, India)
“My life has greater meaning now.”
Renate Jorge, @BeKindBrazil and 365give Member, Family Program (Brazil)
“I just wanted to share that 365give really helped me. I am a better person now, thank you.”
MayLee, 365give Member, Individual Program
“This 365give Challenge has really injected excitement and extra enthusiasm in each work day as I think about what we can do. It has motivated me and the students.”
Cristina Peters, School Counselor (New York City, USA)
“I have seen a huge shift in energy throughout my classroom since doing the 365give Challenge. The Challenge has empowered my students to make a positive difference in the school’s community and beyond.”
Cella Adriana, Special Needs Educator /The Holliswood School (New York City, USA)
“The 365give Challenge helps students understand their impact on others. It opens avenues for introducing and discussing global and local issues in classrooms. It is powerful to watch students of all ages think about how they can make a change in another person’s life with one small act.”
Jessica Hall, Primary Teacher, French Immersion at École Pauline Johnson (West Vancouver, Canada)