Written by: Jenna Moritz
The party was hosted by our Champion Joanie Abraham. Joanie came to CYD’s Ripples of Hope last year (2011) and was floored and inspired to DO something to get the word out. She offered her home for a reception to introduce her friends and family to CYD. To highlight the upcoming school year, the Houseparty was held in September 2011. Joanie’s experience in marketing and event promotion added invaluable concepts and guidance to the party efforts, and her ideas will be reused at Houseparties in the future. The guest roster included 18 new supporters of CYD, as well as, five Senior Corps Members (Alex Sanders, Skye Black, Joel Gullickson, Keyona Thompson and Megan Domanski). The program involved the WSWC video, remarks about the drop out crisis and how City Year changes the playing field in prevention, and was capped by a moving “Why I Serve” statement by each of our Senior Corps Members. The touching and inspirational message from returning corps members affected everyone in the room, including staff! The remaining time, we spent networking and enjoying the company of Joan’s friends and family.
The “Ask” at the end of the evening was done in a remarkably powerful manner by Joanie and was three fold: 1. Host a houseparty yourself to educate your own friends and colleagues about this issue (HS Dropout and that it CAN be prevented); 2. Join an event committee for a more formal fundraiser; 3. Donate if you feel inspired (very soft ask financially speaking). These are, of course, ways we ask people from Detroit and our surrounding region to support City Year Detroit.
As a result, we have 18 new supporters, 4 of whom donated to date! What a success!! Thank you Joanie!