Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Charde Houston is my new favorite player!

I am posting an email sent to me for posting by Theresa Nunn of the South Texas Hoyas. While coach Nunn did not mention her own organization, I happen to know many of her parents and NO ONE has circled the wagons to help and provide support for these kids like her own STH group. The email follows:

I wanted to write to you about the amazing support we've been receiving in this tough time, and how so many wonderful people have not only contributed, but have also committed to help the kids see a brighter future, and lift up their spirits in the process! We have literally received responses from people all over the WORLD!

The one person who sticks out the most is Charde Houston, of the WNBA-Minnesota Lynx,and former UCONN player! She is amazing! Charde read about the story on www.hoopfeed.com , and the very same day, I received an email from her titled: "HELP IS ON THE WAY!", and she was serious! There is a networking site called Twitter, and it's amazing how things can spread on there, good and bad, but this definitely was one of the "good" causes that has spread all over the Internet! (See www.chantellesays.com to read about how Twitter can be used in a good way, story about Charde) Since the moment Charde heard about the tragic story, she has been on a MISSION! She has organized a fund-raiser (http://www.thefemalesportsnetwork.com/charde/charde.html ) for my player and set a goal to not only raise money, but be a mentor for her as well! She has committed to taking her on the road with her during the WNBA season to keep her motivated, and to continue to gain support from around the world for my player and her brother on a long-term basis. She has asked some of her colleague & teammates (Nikki Anosike,Chamique Holdsclaw,Renne Montgomery, Cheryl Ford, Diana Turasi, Tameka Johnson, Dwight Howard,Charlie Bell, Candace Parker, Chantelle Anderson,Cappie Pondexter, Ketia Swanier,Roneeka Hodges,Swin Cash,Janel McCarville,Candice Wiggins) to do some amazing things, such as commit to sending the girl and her brother shoes once a month, sign apparel/shoes to give to the girl as well as auction off in another fund-raiser she set up on Ebay, and most of all, to keep spreading the word! She is having a contest for people to design a shoe on NikeID in honor of Domestic Violence and saying she will wear the shoes in a game and then auction them off, she's also going to auction off her jerseys, and her shoes from the All-Star game last year. She is also seeking support to keep up payments on (girls name) braces with her Orthodonist. She has been through some tough times as a kid, and went from being homeless to a WNBA All-Star, so that is what drove her to start her organization, Project Y.O.U (Youth Opportunities Unlimited-Hardship Breeds Success).
Below is the Blog she posted on http://www.wnba.com/lynx/news/Houston_Raising_Money_to_Aid_Family_in_Need_2009_11_23.html :
Houston Raising Money to Aid Family in Need
Nov 23 2009

"Hey Lynx Fans!

My, my it's getting cold here in France! While the temperature is dropping, we can always keep a warm heart. As the holidays are approaching, just ask yourself, "What can I do to brighten up the lives of others?" As for me, I have already done so.

Life for me, as many may know, is more than running up and down the basketball court. I am an active member in the community, and I am always looking for ways to help others.

I came across an article on twitter this past week about two children who lost their mother in a domestic violence dispute. It saddened me to hear that story, and I immediately started to ask myself how I can be a shining light to this family. I know that twitter is a social media network that is used for many things, such as expressing thoughts and staying in tuned with the latest gossip. I figured that we, as friends, sisters, brothers and parents could come together with compassion and show our deepest sympathy for this family.

I strongly believe that when someone experiences tragedy such as this, those from near and far can make a world of difference by pulling together, and showing them that they are not alone. These kids (Girl, age 11; and boy, age 8) were left with nothing when their mother passed. Although they come from a strong family, they will be left with only memories and proud moments that they shared with their mother.

I have come up with an idea to help raise money for this family. Based on the number of followers I currently have on twitter, if everyone donated just $2, we would be able to raise $3,288.00 for this family in need. Along with myself, many people who follow me have decided to take a big step in donating money to this family. Of course, if you are able to give more, that is always appreciated.

I have set up a paypal account through Project Y.O.U. for those who are willing to donate over the web. We will keep this active until December 20th, and that will give us time to present them with the money. If the goal is reached before then, we will not stop there. We will give the $3,288.00 on the day that our goal is reached. Anything collected after will be sent out on the 20th. You do not have to be a twitter user to make a donation. Please send out mass e-mails, and tell your friends about this. Lets make it happen:)

To donate via paypal please visit this site.

For those who would like an alternative, you can make checks or money orders out to:
Rose Sledge
P.O.Box 740070
San Diego, CA 92174

In order to respect the family's privacy, I will collect the money, and have it personally delivered to the family, along with Christmas gifts for the kids. This will be done just in time for the holidays! I too know what it's like to go without; It hurts, and I just want these kids to have a great life.

I know this blog is different from one that I've ever written, but I hope it will touch the hearts of many. When you feel like your life is hard, just think about people who have to go through things like this. Give thanks everyday. This could have been you.

My heart goes out to that family. I will make it my business to do everything in my power to get you all the help that you need. That is my promise to you. "

Stay Strong,

Charde Houston

Some others that are just as AMAZING are:

LaToya Peterson- has an organization in Minnesota, that helps at risk youth, and has teamed up with Charde in her efforts to help these children. She has offered to gather support from her colleagues to obtain things for the kids, such as clothing and bedroom furniture.

Sally Jenkins- She is a sportswriter in New York and heard about the story through Charde Houston's twitter page. She has since, not only donated, but also sent them a huge package with shoes, apparel, essentials, a Tennessee Vols Women's Basketball Program, and four books on Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, and two on Pat Summit (in which she has written). She has also committed to being a long-term sponsor for the children! Simply amazing!

@DreamWithFaith (Twitter UserName)- Has been in the music/entertainment industry for over 25 years, and has her own Healing the Homeless Organization. She also heard about the story through Charde Houston's twitter page, and has committed to helping find sponsorship for all of my player's entire AAU expenses, as well as donating her services to hold a fund-raiser in San Antonio as well as another major city! (More info coming soon!)

Dan Hughes- Head Coach of the San Antonio Silver Stars has made a donation, and has sent words of encouragement to the family!

Susan Donohoe- NCAA Vice President of Division 1 Women's Basketball has offered to do something for my player during the Women's Final Four event to "help lift her spirits".

Tom Brown- Locally, he is the YBOA Director, and the moment he heard about what happened, he sent a mass email out to everyone he knew, and since then, I've received numerous emails regarding people (as well as Tom & his wife) wanting to donate!

Nell Fortner- Head women's basketball coach for the Auburn University Women's Basketball Team. She has offered to write my player, as well as encouraged her players to do so often, for encouragement and support!

Monica with SilverStars Nation- She is the co-owner of www.silverstarsnation.com and posted the story on her website, and since then, we have received responses/donations from many of the Silver Stars front office. She has also spread the word to ESPN 1250.

Judge Robert Lipo- for donating his time and expertise for the not-so-nice side of the story.

David Scott- with HBO, for making a monetary donation!

Cindy Dallow,PhD-Sports Dietician (UNC Performance Team) gave a monetary donation!

San Antonio's Finest (Boys & Girls)- They have helped with monetary donations, gift cards, clothing, EVERYTHING!!! Not only that, but they have given so much support, from holding fund-raisers within their organization for my player and her brother, contacting businesses such as Walmart to attempt to obtain donations from them, baking cupcakes and selling them as a fund-raiser, one parent even donated money into the children's lunch accounts at their schools!

Lady Rohawks and Team Xpress-I have received emails from parents regarding sending monetary donations, gift cards, and clothing, as well as volunteers for our fund-raising events once we have them.

SA Hustler's (Boys)- Have given a monetary donation!

Sabinal Warriors(Girls)- Are holding a team fund-raiser for the children, as well as offered to volunteer at our fund-raising events once we have them.

SA Comets & SA Magic- Have given monetary donations, as well as clothing.

Oak Hills Church- Has posted an article in their bulletin (At no cost) to spread the word, and members have already donated monetary donations as well as gift cards for the children.

ShesBallin - Thank you for initially getting the word out, because of your efforts, everyone else was able to read the story. Without you posting it, none of this would've been possible!!!

There are so many other people that I'm sure I haven't mentioned, so to ALL of them, on behalf of the family, THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR SUPPORT,ENCOURAGEMENT, AND PRAYERS!!!

Some websites the story is posted on:

Posted on ShesBallin:

Posted on HoopFeed.com:

Posted on Project Y.O.U. website:

Posted on SilverStarsNation:

Posted on ChantelleSays:

Posted on Minnesota Lynx website:


Website to make a donation through PayPal:

Theresa Nunn

South Texas Hoyas