March 06, 2007

Food for Life in Houston Every Sunday

Food for Life Every Sunday
Date: Sun Mar 11 - Sun May 27
Time: 2:00 - 5:00 PM
Location: Hare Krishna Temple
Address: 1320 W. 34th Street, Houston, TX 77018

One in three Houston children goes hungry each day, and Houston is second only to Detroit in the number of hungry children. Food for Life project is a small attempt to create a difference in the lives of at-risk children between the ages of 2-6 years living in Houston area. Every Sunday, volunteers like yourself gather to prepare 300 lunches that include a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a piece of fruit and one half-pint of fruit juice. As we prepare peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and put together lunches with love and care, we realize the difference we are making in our own lives. We are grateful to many individuals and organizations, in particular the Hare Krishna Temple for being a partner in service.

Here's how you can get involved:

o Come volunteer to make lunches

o Donate supplies: Ziploc bags, brown bags, fruit juice.

o Donate gift cards to grocery stores to purchase bread and fresh fruit.

o Come up with your own idea to help support this initiative.

RSVP to volunteer or for more information, email: maushmi@gmail.com

The Reality of Hunger

o 13 million kids live in households that do not have an adequate supply of food .
Unite States Department of Agriculture
o 40 % of all emergency shelter food recipients are children, although they represent only 25% of the U.S. population. United States Department of Agriculture
o 1 in 4 people standing in a soup kitchen line is a child. America's Second Harvest

The Consequences of Hunger

o Hungry children, even those who experience only mild malnutrition during the critical stages of their development, may suffer irreparable harm. Center on Hunger and Poverty
o Hungry children have a harder time learning in school, shorter attention spans, and suffer more absences due to illness. Center on Hunger and Poverty
o Children who do not receive adequate nourishment may suffer abnormal brain, cognitive, and psychological development which, if not corrected, can be irreparable. America's Second Harvest

Posted by maushmi at 12:47 PM | Comments (0)

November 08, 2006

Holiday Service Events in Houston, TX

This upcoming holiday season, let's give a gift that will touch the lives of many of our brothers and sisters who are not able to have the things that we often take for granted. This holiday season, let's open our hearts and minds to give a gift of love and hope by reaching out to those in need in our community. We would like to invite you to participate in below service events that you find meaningful. We are also interested in any ideas that you may have for future service events. For more information contact Maushmi. Email: maushmi@bethecause.org Phone: 832.264.4244 or visit: www.bethecause.org

Thanksgiving
at the Salvation Army's Harbor Light Center
2407 North Main
Houston, TX 77009
Thursday, November 23rd: We will serve thanksgiving meals to the indigent and clean up from 10:00am - 12:00pm at the Harbor Light Center. The Harbor Light Center provides a comprehensive response to the increasing needs of Houston's homeless. Each individual is offered access to immediate and long-term shelter, medical screening and referral, and a spiritual approach to recovery and self-sufficiency.

Christmas Holiday Project
at Thomas Street Clinic
2015 Thomas Street
Houston, TX 77009
Thursday, December 7th, 4:00 - 7:00pm: Please join us to help decorate a floor at Thomas Street Clinic for the patients to enjoy during the Christmas holidays. Thomas Street Health Center is a treatment facility providing medical and psychological services to indigent residents of Harris County diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. Please help make this holiday season special and enjoyable for the patients and staff at TSC by helping to decorate a floor for them.

Healing Sounds
at the Houston Hospice
1905 Holcombe Blvd.
Houston, TX 77030
Saturday, December 16th, 4:30 - 5:30pm: Join us to volunteer your musical talents to create a healing environment for the hospice patients and their families. Research has shown that music can be a therapeutic enhancement to the healing process, soothing and comforting the terminally ill patients. You do not have to be a professional musician, and no experience or knowledge of music therapy is required to volunteer.

Help the Homeless Collection Drive Nov. 15 - Dec. 15
for Healthcare for the Homeless-Houston ( HHH)

Please join us for the toiletry drive in the spirit of reaching out to those who are not as fortunate as many of us to have a stable home, family, or even proper meal. See wish list below for the items we will be collecting. We would like to invite you to participate in a great service event that helps the homeless in Houston.

Much-needed basics: white socks, new underwear (men's, women's, children's -- all sizes), feminine hygiene products, insect repellent with DEET, bottled water (pint/half liter).
Personal hygiene items: soap, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, dental floss, shampoo, combs, brushes, washcloths, hand/body lotion, tissues (small packets), band aids.
Health/hygiene kits: Packaged in gallon size zip-type bags. Personal hygiene items as listed above, wash cloths (2), bandana.
Drop-off Sites: TBD

Random Acts of Kindness

Ever considered an act of random kindness? A few of us volunteers have decided to practice random acts of kindness individually and as a group through out the holiday season and beyond. As simple a gesture as a smile can be uplifting, so the idea is to bring more similes in the world by small gestures of kindness. Below are some ideas that we have gathered. Feel free to share any ideas that you many have.
Group ideas: make homemade holiday greeting cards to pass out at hospitals/nursing homes, collect personal care items, new underwear, and socks for homeless shelters and safe houses, stuffed animal drive for children in hospital.
Individual ideas: Lend an ear to someone going through a tough time, send a nice card to someone who's been an influence in your life, give someone a hug for no reason, help someone with something that they would not expect you to do, leave a good book in a public place with a smile card. To find out more about and order smile cards, visit www.helpothers.org

We can do no great things, only small things with great love. -- Mother Teresa

Posted by maushmi at 08:47 PM | Comments (4)

July 30, 2006

Little Things, Big Difference at Hope Village, Houston, TX

Can small things make a difference? Well, that was the experiment a group of twenty of us volunteers carried out at Hope Village on Saturday, July 22nd. Hope Village is dedicated to providing superior yet affordable residential and support services to children and adults with mental disabilities. We laughed, played games and danced with the residents. We shared food and heart-felt conversations with them. At the end of the day, we realized that we definitely made a difference in our own lives. Though I can’t even fully begin to understand the impact it is having on my own life, here’s a few stories from my experience volunteering at Hope Village:

I was sitting next to Kirk, one of the residents at Hope Village, while playing bingo. I was the very first person to have a bingo, so everyone was very excited at my table and looking forward to winning prizes that we had brought for them. We cheered for each other and had a lot of fun being together. The residents delighted in posing for a picture when they won a prize. Time went by so fast and so did the prizes. Sensing Kirk’s anxiousness who was only one number away from a bingo in pretty much all directions, I suggested that he could just go get a prize. He simply said, “I don’t want to be unfair,” and went back to cheering for others. His response left me shaken. Encountering such integrity and commitment to truth has left a mark on my consciousness, and I know my life will never be the same.

15.jpg No doubt all of us volunteers’ lives have been affected in one way or another. One thing we were all touched by, though, was the genuine care and concern the residents had for each other. When someone couldn’t hear or follow the instructions while playing bingo or other games, their neighbors took delight in helping them. When one resident fell down while dancing, there or four others rushed to help her get up and make sure she was okay. They really looked after each other, which one would expect to be natural because they live together and have known each other for years. However, when one resident noticed a band-aid on one of my fingers did I realize that their care and concern expanded well beyond their circle of friends. He just grabbed by hand and wanted to know what had happened to my finger. He started asking me when and how I had cut myself and whether or not it hurt. He felt relieved and smiled when I told him that it doesn’t hurt at all. Though the stain of blood from my finger got washed away, I’ve been tainted by love I felt among volunteers and residents at Hope Village.

See pictures from Hope Village: http://www.bethecause.org/gallery/Hope-Village

Other volunteers’ reflections:
Dushyant:
I was a bit tentative on what to expect, but barely a minute after arriving, I got my first lesson of the day - one among many, I hope, I never forget. I introduced myself and was going around the table asking everybody’s name and finally came around to Rex, who had been very silent and looked unreachable, or so I presumed, naively. But as soon as I approached him, his demeanor underwent a sudden transformation, as if a switch had been activated, and he spontaneously reached out and gave a big kiss on my cheek. Wow! It hit me like - “small talk is nice, but here’s something more personal and earnest”. It was wonderful and still makes me smile when I think about it.

Later, when it was time to leave, one of the residents thanked us for visiting. What can you say to that? These 2 incidents paraphrase what I saw at Hope-Village. Fearlessness, kindness, gratefulness. And having fun I feel humbled and privileged to have been a part of this beautiful learning experience.

Elham:
Today was an awesome day and it would not have been the same if it was not for the enthusiasm, energy, love, and passion of each and everyone of you [volunteers]. I have been so energetic and happy today. I cannot say enough how much I enjoyed our event. Thank you so much for everything.

Sumana:
It was indeed a wonderful experience for all of us. I can’t stop sharing what I experienced yesterday with all my friends. I realized that many of us here are so engrossed in our own lives that we don’t seem to find time for others at all. And when we do take the initiative to do little things for them, it is extremely rewarding. I agree with you that the most impressive aspect of it all was the care that the residents had for each other. Also, they were so uninhibited in everything they did, be it expressing themselves or doing what they liked. Thank you so much for this opportunity. In all, I had a very nice time and would love to do it again.

Neelam:
I expect to pass through life but once. If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again. ~William Penn

It was an amazing experience, all the love and care that we shared there with those beautiful kids at Hope village seemed to transform into infinite happinness inside us. The feeling that I shared there with all the wonderful volunteers and the kids is ineffable. I hope to do it again. I do want to mention here Maushimi and elham you are doing a great Job!

Posted by maushmi at 08:45 AM | Comments (2)

May 11, 2006

Compassion Cell, Houston, TX

Inspiring Messages
Texas Children's Hospital
Date: Saturday, May 27th
Time: 2:00 – 4:00 pm
Location: 6621 Fannin Street
Houston, TX 77030

Inspiration comes in all shapes and colors. A few months ago I received a package in the mail that contained over one hundred most colorful get well cards made by first grade students from Woodland Hills School in California. I could tell that the kids worked hard and spent a lot of time creating these cards. What truly touched me the most, however, was the sincerity of the messages contained in these cards. See below some of the messages. Please join me on Saturday, May 27th to visit with the patients and pass out these beautiful cards at Texas Children's Hospital as I hope to inspire and to get inspired by the spirit of connecting with children.

RSVP to volunteer or for more info:
email: maushmi@bethecause.org
call: 832.264.4244
or visit: www.bethecause.org

Get Well Messages:

My name is Briana. I like the color purple. I hope you feel better. I am a first grader. I like playing soccer. -- Briana
My name is Sahil. I am 6 years old. I lost 4 teeth. I like all sports. I like the color blue. -- Sahil
I am visiting my grandma and grandpa. I am going to Big Bear on vacation. The weather is sunny. Do you think the hospital is scary? -- Marley
It is sunny and rainy today. My teacher is nice. I hope you feel better. What do you do in the hospital? How are you feeling? -- Claire

Posted by maushmi at 09:42 AM | Comments (0)

January 13, 2006

Change of Heart Weekend

The weekend of Feb 3rd to Feb 5th will change our hearts and minds alike. We will create a tent city and spend the entire weekend outdoors to better understand what it is like to be without a home, without family to turn to, and without the comforts we take for granted in our daily lives. We do this to build empathy for our fellow homeless brothers and sisters who spend every night out on the streets.

We will sleep in cardboard boxes and will eat only the food that is donated to us. We will participate in many activities and workshops to learn more about global poverty, homelessness, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and other social causes to nurture our minds as well as our hearts.

In addition, we will raise funds with all proceeds raised being distributed to:
- The Isiah House. A homeless shelter in Santa Ana.
- Howick Hospice. A local organization that supports children affected by the HIV/AIDS crisis in South Africa.
- Family Support Center. A local organization that provides emergency assistance to poor and homeless people in North Orange County.

More Info:
Participants need to bring a sleeping bag, basic toiletries, jacket or sweater, sensible shoes and clothing and a flashlight.

The event will begin at 5pm on Friday and ends at 5pm on Sunday. Participants are strongly encouraged to stay the entire weekend.

Please RSVP (http://www.bethecause.org/compassion/index.php?location=upcomingla) with your mailing address so a registration form and sponsorship form can be sent to you right away.

Posted by neerav at 08:31 AM

December 23, 2005

Christmas Smiles - 23 December 2005, Houston, TX

A last minute opportunity has arisen to share the spirit of the holidays with folks at Bay Area Turning Point in Houston, TX. Please join us on Friday, December 23th at 4pm to visit the residents at Bay Area Turning Point to distribute beautiful holiday greeting cards from our volunteers in LA. Some of the cards are hand made and they all have wonderful, inspirational messages that will truly help uplift someone spirit during the holiday season. Bay Area Turning Point, Inc. is a non-profit, community based social service agency that empowers survivors of family violence, sexual assault, and displacement by providing crisis intervention and emergency shelter, and promoting education and awareness within our community - the Greater Bay Area of Houston, TX.

For more info. visit www.bethecause.org

The location is in Clear Lake area. Please call Maushmi for directions: 832.264.4244

Posted by maushmi at 11:05 AM | Comments (0)

December 19, 2005

Christmas Caroling at the Houston Hospice

Christmas caroling at the Houston Hospice was definitely one of the most beautiful volunteer experiences I've ever had. The Houston Hospice is an in-patients unit where patients are brought in because they are very sick. Most of the patients who are there usually last only a few days to a few weeks at most. Every time I go there to spend time with patients, I never know if I would see that same patient again next week. Knowing how precious each moment is for these patients, I try to make the most of each visit, each moment I have with them. Especially during the holiday season when they are desperately craving the warmth and comfort of being home with friends and family just like the rest of us, Christmas caroling was a small attempt to bring the joy and spirit of Christmas right where they were.

Caroling event wouldn't have been possible without the help of my good friend Angela's mother, Mrs. McCall, who brought her husband and her friends to sing for the patients at the Hospice. They all had beautiful voices; one of them even played the piano while the another friend accompanied the singing of familiar songs with his guitar. Within moment of starting the singing, the family members of the patients came out in the hallway to join us. Even the Hospice staff and patients sang along with us. At first when the doors started to open, I thought they were coming out to let us know that we were being too loud, but it turned out that they actually wanted to request us to sing their favorite song. Someone requested us to sing Silent Night while others started to clap and dance as the entire atmosphere was being filled with the spirit of Christmas. Seeing everyone with a big smile on their face, I couldn't stop thinking about "Bootsie," the patients on the second floor whom I had visited earlier.

I asked our group to stop by the room of Bootsie as she was lovingly called by everyone in her family, including her thirteen grandchildren. When I was with her earlier, I remembered how anxious she felt thinking that she may not get to go home for Christmas because she may not be around for that long. I told her that Christmas was just around the corner and that I had a surprise for her that would hopefully cheer her up. Sure enough, she lightened up as soon as we approached her room to sing for her. She sang along with us and said she enjoyed every minute of it, and so did we. Caroling was a wonderful way of reaching out to uplift someone's spirit through beautiful songs that helped get us all in the spirit of Christmas.

Posted by maushmi at 11:48 AM | Comments (1)

LA: Holiday Party for the East African Community

Refugees share a common history of discrimination, horror and abuse. Often, they arrive to the United States after being forcibly removed from their own homes and countries because of war or persecution due to race, religion, or ethnicity. An integral part of the work being done by the East African Community of Orange is to welcome these refugees into the US and facilitate their integration into the surrounding community. One way that they do this is through their annual holiday party—a festive event where EACC’s clients have a chance to meet, make friends and experience their first holiday season, indulging in merriment that their lives normally do not allow for.

Be the Cause was honored to host the holiday party this year for EACC on Saturday, December 17th in Anaheim.

During our group introduction, we got to hear some very profound stories and we volunteers had to appreciate how lucky we are to live in America and how we really need to use our privilege and access to resources to make the world a better place anyway we can.

After the introductions, the volunteers caroled the guests of honor and then we enjoyed lots of wonderful holiday snacks. We had arts and crafts activities and small gifts for all the kids. Many of the volunteers brought gently used house ware items and food to be given to the refugees to help them as they rebuild their lives from scratch.

The party was a great success! Everyone had fun. The volunteers got to learn about and meet a group of people that many of them knew very little about.

Posted by trishna at 04:34 AM | Comments (1)

December 17, 2005

Christmas at Thomas Street Clinic, Houston, TX

My friend and a dedicated and compassionate volunteer (who wishes to remain anonymous) shares his thoughts on TSC Compassion Cell:

TSC is a HIV/AIDS clinic in downtown Houston serving the indigent patient population. It can’t be spotted from the main downtown thoroughfare, instead, you’ve to leave behind the glitzy highrises until you cross some invisible line into the grittier parts of the city, the landscape changes and now you weave through the hauntingly solemn, graffiti-plastered walls, pass beyond the silent, rusty, corrugated-iron and tin store-fronts, negotiate the narrow lanes and the weathered shotgun-style houses, and only then, the ‘clinic’ reveals itself. Picture an anachronistic, southern, mission-style’ish building, transplanted straight out of a spaghetti western, complete with red roof and bright paint to match. In the gray overcast, bitterly-cold afternoon, amidst the fading light and the dreary surroundings, this charming structure seemed surreal, incongruous, and almost metaphorical-beckoning humanity’s unfortunate and providing succor.

Inside, the building is a modern hospital. Southern charm gives way to business efficiency. As I’m riding the elevator, a delegation, what appears to be visitors in some official capacity, gets in and gives me curious detached looks. Suddenly the gravitas of a daily workday in this building dawns on me and my mind wanders; I imagine the hallways being privy to overwhelming amounts of enormous, never-ending, wrenching pain and suffering.

We’re given the fourth floor to decorate and I’m welcomed by friendly faces already hard at work. My eyes feast over the smorgasbord of decoration goodies all laid out. The result of ardous work of good-minded folks who all toiled to collect and haul it. I feel a twinge of guilt, showing up empty-handed in time for the feast, but it soon passes and I’m ready to indulge. In a matter of minutes, like pieces in a well-choreographed tableau, the festoons are hung, the wreath is pinned, and an otherwise drab patient lounge is now aglow in warm color - shimmering gold, silver, and red. The energy in the room is palpable, someone mentions a wish to have some background music - yeah, Roxy music or maybe Ravel, for the Christmas tree folks, I think, take your pick - but it doesn’t matter, we’re already jiving to a lively but silent internal beat.

It’s past business hours, the staff has gone home and the hallways are deserted. I was hoping to talk to the extra-ordinary, everyday folks who inhabit and visit this place, but it’s better that we work unseen, without getting in the way of urgent life-saving business. My earlier morbid thoughts have now given way to happier ones; I imagine holiday cheer flowing through the otherwise cold sterile air and smiles on weary faces.

Finally, it’s wrap-up time. Goodbyes are said and I imagine Santa’s elves vanishing in the darkness. I can’t wipe the smile off my face. Strange. Maybe, I should do this more often.

Check out pictures: http://www.bethecause.org/gallery/Christmas

Posted by maushmi at 09:24 AM | Comments (0)

December 14, 2005

Christmas Caroling - 18 December 2005, Houston, TX

Christmas Caroling at the Houston Hospice
Date: Sunday, December 18th
Time: 4:30 – 6:00 pm
Location: 1905 Holcombe Blvd.
Houston, TX 77030

Join us for Christmas Caroling at the Houston Hospice this Sunday, December 18th at 4:30pm. Caroling is an easy and fun tradition that consists of singing the spirit of the holidays with songs many people have heard throughout their lives. Music touches everyone, and this is a perfect opportunity to lift someone's spirit through beautiful songs that will help get us all in the spirit of Christmas.

RSVP or for more info. visit: www.bethecause.org
email maushmi@bethecause.org or call 832-264-4244

Posted by maushmi at 07:40 AM | Comments (0)

December 04, 2005

Houston: Beyond School - A Leadership Workshop for High School Students

On December 3, 2005, Indify hosted a high school leadership workshop for local Indian-American students. Despite their initial skepticism about the workshop, twenty-two students from six different high schools spent the day exploring “what is leadership” through activities, discussions and problem-solving. The morning opened with team-building games, helping to create an atmosphere of openness and allowing students to use their creativity. The first session focused on qualities of leadership and which qualities are most important for effective leadership. It also explored spheres of influence and how in small ways leadership can be practiced.

The afternoon sessions focused on creativity, giving students an opportunity to work together, develop their presentation skills, and use their problem solving capabilities. The aim of the workshop was to give students a chance to understand the value of building leadership skills, enhance leadership capabilities and use creativity to find solutions to difficult situations.

Most students appreciated the opportunity and provided excellent feedback for future workshops. The workshop was co-sponsored by Be The Cause and Charity Focus Houston.

Check out pictures: http://www.bethecause.org/gallery/album46

Posted by maushmi at 01:22 PM | Comments (0)

November 26, 2005

“Beyond School” A high school leadership workshop*

What is leadership? It is more than just holding officer positions, choosing the right university, making career choices, or being successful. It is about making the best of your circumstances and living life to the fullest, particularly in cross-cultural contexts of being Indian-American. As Michael Jordan says, “Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen.”

In partnership with Be The Cause and Indify/Indicorps, CharityFocus Houston invites you to the first of a series of workshops. Make it happen!

Location: Providence Community Association
9114 Woodleigh Drive, Houston, Texas 77083

Date: Saturday - December 3, 2005
Time: 9 am to 4:30 pm

Dress: Comfortable and casual; sneakers recommended

Attendance is free
Lunch Provided

Be ready to challenge yourself through activities and reflective discussions. Come make new friends.

Please RSVP by Thursday, December 1, 2005 to Roopal Shah
by phone at 281-933-6169 or email Roopal@Indicorps.org

*Workshop is free & for high school students of Indian (desi) origin

Posted by maushmi at 02:12 PM | Comments (0)

November 06, 2005

Christmas at Thomas Street Clinic - 8 December 2005, Houston, TX

Christmas at Thomas Street Clinic
Date: Thursday, December 8th
Time: 3:00 – 5:00 pm
Location: 2015 Thomas Street
Houston, TX 77009

In partnership with Baylor College of Medicine, Be The Cause has adopted a floor at Thomas Street Clinic to provide decorations and decorate the floor for the patients to enjoy. Thomas Street Health Center is a clinic for HIV/AIDS patients and serves mostly indigent patients who have very little money and are not able to have the things that we so often take for granted. Please help make this holiday season special and enjoyable for the patients and staff at TSC by donating decorations and decorating a floor for them.

Holiday Decorations Drive:

We are colleting decorations until December 7th. We need an artificial Christmas tree, ornaments, decorative garlands, wreaths, ribbons, etc. Christmas lights and flammable items are not allowed.

Drop-off sites:

- The Methodist Hospital, Fondren-Brown Building, Room F740. 9:00 – 5:00 p.m.

- Baylor College of Medicine, 1 Baylor Plaza, Alkek Lobby. Nov 21 - 23 from 9:00 – 5:00 p.m.

- You can also call 832.264.4244 to arrange to have donations picked up.

- Visit http://cch.pledgepage.org/ to make contributions.

RSVP to volunteer or for more info: email maushmi@bethecause.org; call 832-264-4244; or visit: www.bethecause.org

About Thomas Street Clinic:

Harris County Hospital District's Thomas Street Health Center is a free standing HIV/AIDS treatment facility providing medical and psychological services to residents of Harris Country diagnosed with HIV/AIDS.

Thomas Street Health Center provides a wide variety of health care services and extensive HIV health education for more than 18,000 patients visits.

About Be The Cause:

Be the Cause is a fully volunteer run organization.
Our mission is to create enriching opportunities of service that benefit the community and change our own lives in the process.

Posted by maushmi at 07:43 PM | Comments (1)

Healing Sounds - 19 November 2005, Houston, TX

Musical Performance at the Houston Hospice
Date: Saturday, November 19th
Time: 4:00 – 5:00 pm
Location: 1905 Holcombe Blvd.
Houston, TX 77030

Join us to volunteer your musical talents to create a healing environment for the hospice patients and their families. Research has shown that music can be a therapeutic enhancement to the healing process, soothing and comforting the terminally ill patients. You do not have to be a professional musician, and no experience or knowledge of music therapy is required to volunteer.

RSVP to volunteer or for more info: email maushmi@bethecause.org; call 832-264-4244; or visit: www.bethecause.org

About Sound Therapy

Sound therapy involves singing, song writing, and music-facilitated relaxation with the patient and/or family, providing a positive, pleasant environment for everyone.

Sound therapy may enhance memory recall, build awareness of self, increase positive mood, reduce stress, provide social interaction, and improve quality of life for patients and their family members.

Patient, Family and Hospice Staff Quotes:

“It is difficult to think of a more comforting experience than to have live music at the bedside of a resident who is terminally ill, who can no longer verbalize, and who may otherwise be alone.” -Hospice staff

“It was wonderful to hear her talk about her past and it really helped her relax. She became more alert.” - Patient’s family

“I’m as happy as a lark. Music is the most beneficial thing you can do for anyone; sick or well.” -Respite patient

Posted by maushmi at 07:27 PM | Comments (0)

September 06, 2005

Hurricane Katrina Technology Efforts

Volunteers are needed in Houston, Texas to staff the Astrodome Community Technology Center (ACT Center) set up by Technology For All. Please see their blog for contact information and additional needs.

Technology For All will be organizing to develop other centers. Please email kann@pdq.net if you want to help/coordinate.

Posted by yoomilee at 11:49 PM | Comments (0)

July 06, 2005

Women Building Hope - 16 July 2005, Houston, TX

Date: Saturday, July 16th
Time: 7:30 am ñ 12:30 pm
Location: 13572 State Hwy 249, Houston, TX 77086

RSVP to volunteer or for more info: email: maushmi@bethecause.org or visit: www.bethecause.org

Be The Cause will join Women Build Project kickoff on July 16th. Habitat for Humanity International's Women Build department promotes the involvement of women in the construction of Habitat houses by providing an opportunity for women to learn construction in a supportive environment. Women Build works through affiliates to nurture, recruit and train women to build and maintain simple, decent, healthy and affordable homes. Only women volunteers are allowed for this project. Men interested in volunteering should contact Habitat or visit: www.habitat.org

Women Build Program History

  • In 1991, a group of women in Charlotte, N.C ., completed the first women-built Habitat for Humanity house. With this, the seeds for Habitat for Humanity's Women Build program were planted; and in May 1998, the Women Build department was officially instituted. Since 1991, women crews have built more than 350 Habitat houses in the United States, and the program has grown internationally as well.

  • From April 1999 through April 2001, the Women Build department put forth its first formal initiative, First Ladies Build. Through First Ladies Build, women governors and first ladies in each of the 50 states joined Habitat for Humanity to build houses with families in need.

  • More than 350 Habitat houses have been built in the United States by women crews. This number continues to grow, especially through the success of the Women Building A Legacy initiative, which invites women to address the problem of substandard housing and its effects on the health and well-being of children.

Be the Cause is a fully volunteer run organization.
Our mission is to create enriching opportunities of service that benefit the community and change our own lives in the process.

"Women, whether subtly or vociferously, have always been a tremendous power in the world." -- Eleanor Roosevelt

Posted by yoomilee at 12:27 AM | Comments (2)

June 28, 2005

Fun in the Sun - 4 July 2005, Houston, TX

It's fun in the sun and party in the park!

Date: July 4th
Time: 5:00 pm
Location: Clear Lake Park, Houston, TX
RSVP: Purvi75@hotmail.com

- To meet and mingle with Be The Cause and CharityFocus volunteers

- Share your ideas and become a part of the BTC and CF's service revolution here in Houston!

- Enjoy 4th of July fireworks, food, music, ultimate Frisbee, and much moreÖ

- Don't miss out!!!!

Posted by yoomilee at 12:43 PM | Comments (0)

June 05, 2005

Build Homes Build Hope - 18 June 2005, Houston, TX

The Be The Cause and CharityFocus Houston Chapter's next Compassion Cell is:

Build Homes Build Hope
Date: Saturday, June 18th
Time: 7:30 a.m. ñ 12:30 p.m.
Location: 13572 C S. H. 249, Houston, TX 77086

Be The Cause and CharityFocus volunteers will join Habitat For Humanity in its mission to help families step out of poverty and into decent, affordable homes. Volunteers will help out with construction, painting, carpentry, landscaping, and fencing. No experience is necessary.

RSVP to volunteer or more info:

email: maushmi@bethecause.org

or visit: www.bethecause.org

Why Habitat for Humanity Is Needed

  • Millions of Americans face a housing crisis. 5.1 million American families have "worst-case" housing needs, forced to pay more than half their income for housing, endure overcrowded conditions and/or live in houses with severe physical deficiencies.

  • Housing problems have far-reaching consequences. The high cost of housing leaves low-income families little money for other basic necessities like food, clothing or health care. Substandard housing can endanger the health and safety of its occupants, erode their hope and self-worth, and impair their children's ability to succeed in school.

  • Habitat for Humanity is changing lives. Working in partnership with low-income families to build decent homes they can afford to buy, Habitat helps to break the cycle of poverty and hopelessness. By the end of 2005, more than 1 million people worldwide will live in decent, affordable Habitat for Humanity houses. For more information visit: www.habitat.org

Additional Info.

    Volunteers under the age of 14 are NOT allowed for safety reasons. If you are 14 or 15 you must have an adult sponsor present and are limited to certain activities, such as painting and landscaping. Between 16 and 18 you may help in construction but will not be allowed to do any hazardous activity or use power tools.

  • You must wear closed-toe shoes on site. Especially during summer, wear light clothing and a hat. You should bring gloves, and may want to bring a pencil, tape measure, utility knife, hammer, nail apron and even sun screen. If you bring tools, mark your name on your tools! You do not need to bring tools as they available on-site. Water will be provided, but you are welcome to bring additional drinks.

Posted by yoomilee at 10:11 PM | Comments (1)

May 15, 2005

Recreation Day at Hope Village - 28 May 2005, Friendswood TX

The Be The Cause and CharityFocus Houston Chapter's next Compassion Cell is Recreation Day at Hope Village.

Date: Saturday, May 28th

Time: 1:00 ñ 3:00 pm

Location: 15403 Hope Village Road, Friendswood, Texas 77546

RSVP to volunteer. Email: maushmi@bethecause.org or call: 832.264.4244

For more info visit: www.bethecause.org

Hope Foundation provides superior yet affordable residential and support services to handicapped children and adults.

Volunteers will engage in fun activities with the residents which include board games and even outdoor sports (if the weather is nice.) We will also give out prizes that have already been donated. The event will be a lot of fun for both the residents and the volunteers.

About Mental Retardation

  • Mental retardation is a disability characterized by significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior as expressed in conceptual, social, and practical adaptive skills.

  • This disability originates before age 18.

  • Over 2 million people are estimated to be living with mental retardation in the United States.

  • Possible Causes include genetic or hereditary causes such as in Down's Syndrome and Prenatal development problems.

Visit the Fine Line: Mental Health/Mental Illness exhibition at the Houston Center for Photography. This humanistic exhibition gives a personal face and voice to mental illness and seeks to remove societal stigmas from those who suffer from these diseases.

Posted by yoomilee at 10:23 PM | Comments (1)