February 21, 2007

Depending on the kindness of strangers…

Many of you know that I work for the Y*M*C*A. The Y that I happen to work in is an urban Y within a community that has a diversity that rivals the United Nations. Thirty-six languages are spoken in my service area and the median household income is $26,000 a year in a town where the average rent falls in the $1,200 a month range. Many of our members and participants are immigrant families trying their hardest for a better life. They brought their families to this country so their children could be educated and have more opportunities than they had as children. They are chasing the American Dream.

But the American Dream is expensive. Many of our parents work more than one job. Many cannnot speak enough english to help their children with their homework. Many cannot afford quality, reliable childcare. That’s where we come in. We provide childcare to over 1,000 kids a day at 8 different schools and sites. Most of these kids are subsidized through grants but our licensed childcare programs are fee-based. Ninety-percent of the kids that come through our doors are eligible for financial aid. And since it is our goal never to turn anyone away due to an inability to pay, we must raise funds to cover the costs of our subsidies.

Every year during this time we host our Annual Support Campaign. We ask our members, friends, family and neighbors to contribute to this much-needed cause. This year our goal is to raise $120,000. We are four weeks into our five week campaign and we are short of our goal right now by about $30,000. This is making me nervous and causing me to wake up at night wondering how we’re going to reach our goal.

And that’s why I’m writing this. Perhaps you can help. Many of you come to this blog and read about Swee’Pea and TheMonk and I am very grateful for your interest in what I write here. I would be equally grateful if you would consider making a pledge on behalf of Swee’Pea and TheMonk. You can do this two ways…

1) You can pledge your amount in the comments or by sending me an email at childsplayx2@gmail.com. By making a pledge only, you will have the leeway of spreading out your payments over the next 10 months. We will send you a confirmation of your pledge and you can let us know how you’d like to pay.

2) You can go to our corporate website and make a one-time payment via our donations page. Please designate your donation to my Y (email me at childsplayx2 [at] gmail [dot] com for the name of my Y). In the comment section, please put “Matthew” so I know that a payment was made.

All donations to the Y are tax deductible. Your donation goes to a great cause – one that I support every day of my life – and your contribution will help improve the life of a child. What could be more rewarding than that?

Oh, and if you have a blog and make a donation, I will link your blog on my front page to the right for the next month. If you donate over $100 I’ll do a post soley about your blog or I’ll write a poem for any occasion. Thank you for your support!


  1. Hello there,
    Well, let me be the first to donate/delurk to an excellent cause. Our family, my husband, son and I, live on 31K a year here in California. So I know a little bit about making ends! I can’t give enough to earn a poem but every little bit counts, right. Your blog has brought me many tears and laughter and I thank you.

    Comment by Pam — February 21, 2007 @ 10:29 pm

  2. Count me in. :)

    Comment by Deanna — February 23, 2007 @ 12:13 pm

  3. I bow my head and applaud your hard work. I’ll send you a separate email with details about a small donation.

    Nice weekend


    Comment by AdventureDad — February 23, 2007 @ 1:43 pm

  4. Oh, by the way. How are the kids doing after their illness?


    Comment by AdventureDad — February 23, 2007 @ 1:48 pm

  5. Have I ever mentioned that I worked at the YMCA (childcare) for about 8 years in Tucson?

    I almost took a job in Berkley with them but never found a place to live, turned down the offer and moved to Seattle where I traded in kids for drunks.

    Enjoyed working there (Y) though!

    Comment by whit — February 26, 2007 @ 12:02 pm

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