Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Changing Lives: Charlie and Maria

I’m excited to bring you some updates from Chicago’s Emergency Fund, the organization I’ll be donating 10% of my Etsy profits to this year. I’ll be posting some of the stories they send to those on their email list so you can have an idea of what impact they make in the Chicago area. Below is the first story!

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If you met Charlie, you would see a regular eight-year-old boy. You would never guess that he was born three months early, that he weighed only one pound at birth, or that, as a result, he has permanent breathing problems.

This winter Charlie's mother, Maria, noticed that he was having more trouble breathing than usual, and that his symptoms were at their worst when she turned on the dirty gas furnace. Maria knew that using electric heaters to warm her home would be costly, but with her son's health on the line, she didn't have a choice.

Maria did what any mother would do, but that didn't help her pay the electric bill. With no one else to turn to, Maria came to the Emergency Fund for help. We helped Maria pay her electric bill, and a Fund Manager at Renaissance Social Services provided her with information on furnace cleaning.

Today Maria doesn't have to worry about keeping the lights on, and, now that the furnace has been cleaned, Charlie can breathe easy.

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Next week I’ll be going on a site visit with Emergency Fund staff, and will then blog about the visit. Can’t wait!

Please, make a donation to the Emergency Fund today. Together we will make the small change that changes lives.

Donate today and your new or increased gift will be matched* by an anonymous donor!

*Double your impact! An anonymous donor is matching all new or increased gifts. That means that 100% of first-time gifts and gifts from donors who have not given since 2008 will be matched. For those who gave in 2009 or 2010, any amount above the highest annual gift amount in 2009 and 2010 will be matched.

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