The past year has been difficult for everyone, but non-profit organizations have been perhaps hit the hardest. While their work must go on, they are unable to hold the annual fundraisers and support events that help provide the income to keep them going. Covid-19 has challenged many such organizations to find creative ways to enlist help from the community.
Hospice Cleveland County (HCC) is one such non-profit that recently announced fundraising plans for 2021.
Four fundraisers are potentially on the organization's calendar for the year: Hearts for Hospice, which runs Jan. 4 - Feb. 26, 2021; the annual Chicken Dinner Fundraiser, for which a date is still to be determined; the Christmas Card Fundraiser, which will be held in late fall; and Lighting the Way, which is planned for Dec. 10, 2021.
"The Chicken Dinner Fundraiser has always been our biggest event of the year and our largest fundraiser," says Pam Sharts, HCC director of marketing and public relations. "But we are still very uncertain as to whether we will be able to have it this year. Traditionally we have held it in the spring, but with Covid, we are just not sure. Many of the folks that volunteer for this fundraiser are in high-risk groups, so we really want to be careful. It's possible we will be able to have it in the fall, but it is not guaranteed."
Because of this situation, the organization's other fundraisers are now even more vital.
"We are really hoping that people will participate in 'Hearts for Hospice' this year, even if they have never done so before," says Sharts. "It is a perfect fundraiser for these socially distanced times, because the hearts can be purchased online and printed at the donor's home or office."
Hearts for Hospice allows contributors to donate $1 or more per heart. Each heart is dedicated in honor or memory of a loved one, and the heart can be displayed in the individual's home, office or church.
"We hope folks will take pictures of themselves with their hearts and tag us on Facebook or other social medias sites," says Sharts.
Hearts can be purchased online or at the Hospice Administration Building located at 951 Wendover Heights Dr., Shelby. Online orders will be emailed a heart to print and
"We are hoping to get churches, church groups, businesses, and civic and social organizations involved by selling the hearts," says Sharts, "Any groups that are interested in doing this can call me directly, and we can leave a packet of hearts for them at their location or they can pick the packet up at the Hospice office."
Sharts says bulletin inserts or leaflets for shopping bags will also be available for any churches or stores that might be interested in spreading the word about the fundraiser. For more information about selling the hearts, contact Sharts directly at 704-751-3573. All money and unsold hearts will be due back to the Hospice office by March 12, 2021.
"Thanks to the generosity of our community members, we are able to provide highquality, skilled, compassionate care and support for individuals with a life-limiting illness," says Sharts. "We support these patients and their families regardless of ability to pay."
All proceeds raised in Hearts for Hospice will support the general operations of Hospice Cleveland County.
To make an online donation, visit Eventbrite.com and search for "Hearts for Hospice Cleveland County NC."