$50,000 Changes Lives in Arizona

01-21-2014 2:04 PM

Today’s post is by Doreen Davison, the Development/Communications Manager of A New Leaf.  This organization from Mesa, Arizona, received a $20,000 grant and won The Mary Kay Foundation’s Facebook contest for an additional $30,000.

I moved from New York to Arizona seven years ago to take this position, which supports fundraising and marketing for A New Leaf’s homeless and domestic violence shelters.  At first, I thought it would be a stepping stone to greater things.

Instead, I quickly realized this job is the greater thing.  I fell in love with our mission statement:  “Helping Families … Changing Lives.”  I’m sure you know what I mean.  The Mary Kay Foundation changes lives every day.  When you give, you touch the lives of others.  Never underestimate how your kindness affects others.  It often reaches farther than you can imagine.  I’m so grateful to you and to The Mary Kay Foundation.

Our Autumn House shelter serves about 200 women and children each year.  I wish you could see first-hand the difference the $50,000 will make in their lives.  Many come to us with nothing but the clothes they are wearing. Through your donations, we can provide them with a safe place to stay, basic living supplies, education and empowerment. 

I love to tell Dede’s story.  She was married to an abuser and the mother of two boys.  Her husband controlled her work and social life, keeping her isolated from family and friends.  He also made her stand on a scale every day to see if she gained a pound.  If she did, she was in serious trouble because it might threaten her hourglass figure. 

During her stay at Autumn House, she learned how to stop the cycle of abuse and became empowered to help her sons work through their anger issues.  Today, she is a successful business woman and a new grandmother.  Her sons are thriving in their personal and professional lives. 

There are countless stories like Dede’s that give me a sense of satisfaction at the end of every day. You can learn more about us at www.turnanewleaf.org.