Diabetes education given a boost of adrenaline

The community has given the Humphrey Diabetes Center a boost of adrenaline by supporting two recent fundraising projects for the Center.

Elementary school kids in Emmett inspired a rural neighborhood with their "Pennies for Diabetes" project this spring on behalf of the Humphreys Center. Shadow Butte Elementary students began by collecting change in canning jars in their classroom. When they announced their project on the school's reader board outside, neighbors started stopping in with their jars of change. Within just 4 weeks, the 400+ students had raised $812.17.

According to Principal Cindy Roberts, the project was inspired by a third grader diagnosed with diabetes early in the school year and by the services the diabetes center subsequently provided to the school. "We appreciate that the Humphreys Center was willing to come all the way out here to do two trainings — for our whole staff and for an emergency 'first responders' team."

St Luke's Kid for a Night

My inner child was out in full force Friday night for the St. Luke’s Kid for a Night. Arriving at the Boise Centre on The Grove, I got to choose my age for the evening (age 8, thank you very much) and then proceed into a world filled with magic and fun for all ages.

Like kids at a carnival, we ran around The Grove trying out the fun activities. There was the Gyroscope, a bungee run, scooter racing, several varieties of inflatable jumping machines, plus lower-impact activities such as making a video as the DanceHeads, fortune telling, and craft activities.

I was surprised and a bit delighted that there wasn’t a live auction nor were there any presentations during the evening. Dinner was a buffet, freeing us to just enjoy the activities throughout the entire evening.

FUNDSY tickets still available

Tickets are still available for the Treasure Valley's premier fundraising event, the FUNDSY Gala Dinner and Charity Auction, held once every two years to support capital improvements within the Boise area's arts, education, civic and social services community.

This year's event, on May 3 at the Boise Centre on The Grove, marks the 41st annual staging of the most unique benefit auction in the area supporting groups and causes that make a difference in the quality of life for everyone in the Treasure Valley. The highlight of the gala is the live and silent auctions that have featured vacation destinations, cars, jewelry, and dining experiences.

Food and fashion

Food and fashion, two of our favorite things, are the themes for the next week. First there’s the annual Culinary Walk-About for Meals on Wheels tonight where the lucky attendees get to sample food items from 20 of the area’s top chefs. Yum!

Then there are two chances to get your fashion fix over the weekend. The Alley Repertory Theater (ART) is holding a fundraiser on Friday night at the newly opened
Visual Arts Collective (VAC) in Garden City. I just went to a concert at VAC last night and can tell that it is going to be one of the hippest places in town for events. For $20, you can see avant garde clothing by designer Tod Alan in an ultra-cool setting, all to benefit an innovative new community theater company.

Having a blast at 'The Prom'

We dressed, we dined, we danced. What fun it was on Saturday night to join Faith in Action at their annual fundraiser, “The Prom.”

We knew when we walked into the Big Easy and saw the 16-piece big band The Kings of Swing set up on the stage that we were in for a treat. This was not your daughter’s prom! Attendees were on the floor dancing up a storm and we Divas were only too pleased to join in.

We enjoyed talking to many of the board members including Dawneen Blakeslee, Sue Saldin, and Charlie Sety and finding out about the excellent work they are doing on behalf of the “senior class” -- senior citizens and families dealing with ailments such as Alzheimer’s.

The Divas are going to the Prom!

After several years hiatus (we won’t discuss how many!) the Divas are donning their best dresses and heading to the Prom.

The Prom is Saturday, April 5, at The Big Easy. All proceeds benefit Faith in Action, an interfaith program that provides nurturing, informal care giving services to seniors as well as respite and companionship for families coping with Alzheimer’s and other forms of memory loss.

Now back to the Prom ... There was no hesitation this time around when the Divas were asked to go to the Prom. After all, what’s not to like? Lose the parents, the corsages, and the awkwardness of that age. Add in a full bar, dancing to the Kings of Swings, and a fabulous silent auction. We say that everyone should all get to experience Prom again, and this time do it right and do it for a good cause!

Let the hair fly!

On Saturday, March 15, the 4th annual St. Baldrick's Celebration was held at Tablerock Brewpub and Grill. The energy was palpable, the tears flowing and the hair flying as people gathered to raise money and awareness for those with childhood cancer by shaving their heads. It was quite a sight to behold and a special day for all who attended.

Prior to the event, over 35 people had signed up and gathered pledges. By the end of the four-hour event, a total of 61 heads were shaved. Shavees were brought up, 3 at a time, to get their heads shorn. The audience was moved and supportive, cheering on both men and women as they shed their hair. The shaving itself was quick and shocking, especially the first strip down the center of the head. But as they emerged from the protection and mask of their hair, their faces were glowing with a beauty that was transformational.

Samoas? And some Tagalongs …

What a fabulous time of the year! We have a little heat snap (well, it’s at least over 45 degrees today), you can go skiing or golfing, and the Girl Scouts are delivering their little morsels of goodness -- the Girl Scout cookies!

Just about every person in America has a favorite Girl Scout cookie (my personal favorite is Samoas as I find it hard to resist the combination of chocolate and coconut), and this is an example of one of the best fundraising activities around.

They did something very right when they started their bake sales and cookie sales back in 1917 and learned how to keep consistency and quality the hallmark of their product. I remember selling 100 boxes of Thin Mints to a family I babysat for because the dad could not get enough of the cookies. He was a true addict, and most buy just a couple boxes, but if you freeze them, they last very well and you can enjoy them year-round.

'The Best is Yet to Come ...'

Saturday, Feb. 23, was a grand celebration for the Children’s Home Society. With the theme “The Best is Yet to Come...”, the night was an elegant tribute to the 100-year history of CHS as an Idaho institution serving the needs of Idaho’s children.

Singer Adam Gottesman helped set the mood of the evening with his crooner-style singing. After dinner the live auction was held and achieved astounding results. Moneytree Inc. helped with the momentum of the bidding by contributing $1,000 for every live auction item that exceeded the donation value.

One of the highlights of the evening was the announcement of an upcoming Boise appearance by Tony Bennett on May 10, 2008. Gala attendees were provided with pre-sale ticket opportunities to the concert.

Bring on the noise!!

Editor’s note: Here is the premiere blog at IdahoStatesman.com from the Divas for a Difference. The Divas – Cece Gassner, a local attorney, and Larissa Lamson, a manager for a software technology company — aim to promote a spirit of community as well as highlight news from nonprofit groups. This blog will appear every Tuesday and Thursday. The Divas also write a regular column in Sunday’s Idaho Statesman and Treasure Magazine.

The bidding was loud and furious at the Dress for Success auction, and sound of the fantastic live auction items added to the frenzy!

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