I've apparently been reading WAY too many wonderful posts. I wanted to honor the person that gave me this idea in a post and I can't find it---I need some HELP! Hold on, I got it! It kept me up all night but the genius of this idea was Andrew Lenza and here is his blog: Pay it Forward: Write a Localism Blog for a Non Profit Organization in Your Area. THANK YOU, ANDREW!!
I have always wanted to give back and help an organization or some place or people on Long Island that are in need. And there are many of them. Seniors, in particular want to stay because of children and relatives and have such a difficult time with rising taxes and the expense to live here. I took over as Director of the Long Island Chapter of The International Feng Shui Guild with one purpose: to gather the support of other like-minded consultants and do a project that would benefit people.
Long Island has a considerable number of Feng Shui Consultants, yet after emails and phone calls, I only ended up with two Consultants who wanted to help. As Director, however, it was my responsibility that this project go off without a hitch...I drove to many places on the Island looking for something just the three of us could "pull off." I was getting discouraged and most discouraging was an email I opened one evening from the Guild. It was discouraging me from doing the project at ALL in "case it was a flop." I was crushed. (The Guild heard the passion and decided to take a chance on me :)
I LOVE timing, it is everything. And it was just at that moment that my son came home. One look at my face and he asked me what was wrong; I told him. I won't use his exact language but he said we would do it on our own; HE HAD JUST JOINED THE TEAM. Gotta love these kids. He came home from work early the next day and I was to go look at a place I thought we may be able to help. Now that he was on board, he came along. The place was called The Jones Manor and is located in Bayville, Long Island in the town of Oyster Bay. It is a beautiful area on the North Shore and a beach community, right on the Water.
To condense this story, this place is run strictly on donations. It is a home for the elderly and frail and oftentimes they are left there and no one even comes to visit. A number of rooms were in need of repair and they said whatever we could do would be appreciated. Just a room. What struck us both was the LOVE the staff had for these residents. They were either strictly volunteer or minimum wage workers who were there because they CARED. And apparently forgotten by the Community as well.
We were almost at the end when they showed us the outside deck. It sits right on the water and was broken and unsafe and the residents were not allowed to use it! They could not go outside and no one is helping these people? We had to sit down with the "Board" members after that to see if we could do anything and I had to check with two other consultants. My normally quiet son spoke up "I'm fixing that DECK." Wait, you can't fix the deck, I need you to paint. He was adamant and told the board members; I don't know when I've seen him so upset at what he saw and so passionate about something.
He fixed that deck alone, rebuilt it and did it to Code which we were unaware of. In addition, the Conference room was painted and fixed up, the hallway which was a "library" was changed, the smoking room was painted and we set up a new, inviting place for the residents to gather. All with a little Feng Shui thrown in. Word got out, people started to donate their time, some money and come to visit with residents long forgotten by their own families. That was last August, 2006. From the ENERGY of three Feng Shui Consultants and one terrific son. In speaking to their director recently, help has not been coming in. They are being forgotten yet again.
They are non profit and The Jones Manor will always need help. If you live in the area, if you have a talent to teach the seniors, if you want to adopt one, bring a pet in, make a donation, this is a very worthy cause. For before and after shots you can visit my website at http://www.FengShuiLI.com under "Community" page. Keep the Love Alive in The Jones Manor.