The SHARE Foundation
Apex was recently invited to help out at Sharing Meadows annual Leprechaun Hunt. We had a few of our guys driving tractors for the hay rides. It was great being a part of such an amazing organization and were honored at the thought. SHARE Foundation receives no government support whatsoever; they have always relied solely upon private donations and their own fundraising efforts to support our work. Their professional staff is augmented by hundreds of volunteers – friends, students, and professionals, who share their time and their talent while they learn and experience the value of other-abled adults. The SHARE Foundation came into vision in 1977, under the direction of Father Blaney, however, it began as Protective Services Board the following year. The main purpose of the Board was to find ways to provide help and services to other-abled and their families. The Protective Services Board was disbanded following completion of survey documentation. A new board was then formed, with some of the same members from the Protective Services Board. Their purpose would be to address and implement the training of capable care providers to serve the families of the other-abled. And with this, the movement had begun! In 1980, an organization called Respite Care Services for the Handicapped was incorporated. Insert 1982, SHARE Foundation with the Handicapped was formed.
With the aid of our Community and the fundraising events, SHARE Foundation is able to provide a full Residential Community. Sharing Meadows consists of five villages. Each village is comprised of three homes, with each being inhabited by two other-abled adults and a full-time steward. The Villagers (residents) have very full lives, adhering to daily work schedules that alternate their vocational training between birdfeeder and birdhouse construction, ceramics workshops, and computer labs. One of the most visionary vocations the other-abled engage in is the planting of thousands of fruit-bearing trees and bushes. This enterprise not only beautifies and improves the land, but it firmly solidifies our economic future by yielding salable goods and food for the villagers – a mini-industry with the potential for significant long-term results.
This is where the fundraising events such as the Leprechaun Hunt come in to aid so much of the future for SHARE Foundation. The Hunt brings in more and more people each year from all different areas surrounding Sharing Meadows. Last year, the Hunt brought in over 10,000 people, Father Blaney sees that being the case this year as well. Of course, the food and myriad of entertainment is attractive, but what is really captivating is seeing and feeling the joy that expands throughout, the knowing that your attendance is truly making a difference and giving a life to other-abled adults who desire to thrive just like all of us who are abled. Finding a leprechaun is tons of fun, too! Hundreds of volunteers come in to prepare and operate the Leprechaun Hunt, therefore allowing all the proceeds to be invested into more villages. A spokesperson with the Leprechaun Hunt says this year alone, the event raised more than $100,000.00.
For over 30 years, the Share Foundation has been organizing summer camps and values retreats for other-abled adults. Summer camp has grown enormously from the first camp that was held at Father Blaney’s home. Gradually, more weeks were added and Camp Sharing Meadows was held at various locations including Butternut Springs and Apple Acres. In 1995, the St. Timothy Center was constructed at Sharing Meadows to be used as a permanent camp facility. Hundreds of college students have interned at SHARE Foundation summer camps as counselors and directors. These students have left SHARE to pursue careers in related fields such as special education, physical therapy and social work.
Those of us at Apex Filling Systems who were able to attend were so thrilled to be invited to join in on such a memorable and enjoyable family day! Be sure to check out their Facebook page SHARE Foundation for any upcoming events you could join in on.
Consider donations to SHARE Foundation.
Your donation today can help SHARE reach into tomorrow! With your financial contribution, they are able to continue to offer their invaluable programs and services, camps, further expand out residential community, and grow their educational and vocational offerings. Every dollar provided helps to enrich the lives of SHARE Foundation’s other-abled.
Please consider a legacy gift to SHARE Foundation in your will. Your gift will allow other-abled individuals to continue to live as productive members of a loving community.