December 8, 2010

We did it! Bread for the City surpassed our capital campaign goal.

—This post is by Dorothy Hawkins, member of Bread for the City's Board of Directors.

As a member of Bread for the City's Capital Campaign Committee, I am delighted to announce that Bread for the City has surpassed our goal of $8.25 million for our Northwest Center expansion, raising $8.35 million in total.

This great news comes just as construction on the new facility is completed, more than doubling the size of our Northwest Center. And as of this week, we are open for service!

It was no small feat to raise this much money, and right in the midst of the greatest recession in my lifetime. And I am especially proud of my role, not just as a member of the Capital Campaign Committee -- but also as a Bread for the City patient.

I came here a decade ago, some time after I'd lost my job. When you’re my age, losing a job is like starting all over again--and it’s hard. I was near despair when I turned Bread for the City. They helped me put food on my table; they also provided me with some of the best health care I'd ever received, and even the resources and inspiration I needed to get back into the job market and eventually find a new job. Since my new job lacks health insurance, I stayed on with Bread for the City as a patient. I gave back by volunteering, and donating when I could. Eventually, I was invited to join the Board of Directors.

My proudest accomplishment as a board member is spearheading the development of a dental clinic in the new facility. Dental care is badly underserved in D.C. I know, because right now I'm having some serious issues with my teeth. They hurt, which makes it difficult for me to do my job. So I made sure that this was a high priority for the new medical clinic. Initially, Bread for the City expected to be able to open this dental practice three to five years after our expansion -- but given how much support we received from the community, we now have the opportunity to hire a dentist even within this year. We are so grateful.

You can help us expand even faster than we'd hoped. There's one week left of our Capital Campaign -- one week in which donations of more than $500 will be recognized by the inclusion of your name on the Honor Wall in our new lobby.Of course, gifts of any size make a real difference, and give you a great feeling of being a part of something special -- I know, because I'm a donor myself. I don't earn much money, but I give what I can to Bread for the City. I'm sure they can get by without my help -- but that's not why I do it. I do it because it comes from my heart. I want to know that, for all the help I’ve received, I can then help someone else along the way.

So please join me by making a gift today. Together, we'll ensure that Bread for the City can expand its services to thousands more people in the community -- people like me.

Thank you for all of your support.

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