The below post was submitted by Marie Dimech, an Operational Volunteer of the Answering TTP Foundation.
"On September 10, 2014, Sydney Kodatsky, the Executive Director of the Answering TTP Foundation, asked me if I would consider attending an event on behalf of the Foundation.
As a volunteer, I was flattered to be asked to represent the Foundation at an event, but also a little apprehensive - what would be expected of me? Would I need to make a speech in front of a crowd? These are questions that swirled in my brain, as I have never been very comfortable speaking in public. Sydney quickly put my worries at ease; she told me that the Foundation had been contacted by the President of the Ontario Insurance Adjuster Association (“OIAA”) in the Niagara Region and requested our presence at their upcoming Annual Golf Tournament because we had been selected as the beneficiary of proceeds from their 2014 event. They asked that someone from the Foundation attend the dinner and perhaps say a little something on behalf of the foundation, when accepting the cheque. Sydney assured me that I would just need to say a few words, written and provided to me ahead of the event so I could prepare, thanking the donors and attendees, while also giving them some information about TTP and the Foundation. Easy Peasy!
This is a first for the Answering TTP Foundation, so of course we were thrilled to hear that the Foundation was this year’s charity of choice for the OIAA Golf Tournament; how could I turn down this opportunity! I did however, have to consider a couple of things before accepting this invitation: (1) It was going to take me two hours during Friday’s rush hour traffic to reach the event and, (2) the event fell on the night before the Walk to Answer TTP Together, the Foundation’s global fundraiser/awareness event for which I am Chair. I could easily have passed on the invite, but felt very strongly that it was important to everyone involved that a representative from the Foundation be in attendance. So of course, I happily accepted.
On September 19th, Taryn equipped me with a hard copy of my “speech”, awareness materials to hand out, and with a smile, she wished me good luck.
I managed to recruit Janice, a fellow volunteer, to accompany me on this road trip. We arrived at the Sparrow Lakes Golf Course in Welland at 6:00 p.m., and were welcomed with open arms by Katie, the President of the OIAA and her team of organizers. Katie’s cheerful and friendly greeting put any lingering apprehension and anxiety to rest right away. She escorted us to her table where we met fellow organizers and enjoyed a delicious buffet dinner.
Katie proceeded to make the announcement that Answering TTP Foundation was the charity they had chosen as the beneficiary of their 2014 golf tournament and how TTP had recently touched this business’s community, thus making the cause near and dear to them. Katie’s boss was diagnosed with TTP in 2014, and as a result of blood clots floating in his brain he suffered a stroke.
|Janice, Pino, Marie, Rita & Katie (from left)|
Katie presented me with the proceeds, over $2,000 that will go towards the Foundation’s TTP education, support and research initiatives and then asked me to say a few words. Throughout the evening there was a hum of chatter but when I started speaking, you could hear a pin drop in that room. People were keenly focused on learning about TTP and the Foundation.
I was fortunate enough to meet Katie’s boss that evening along with his wife, the woman who has been his rock. I was happy to hear that the hospital where he underwent his treatment provided him with education materials that were obtained from the Foundation, and in particular, the New Patient Brochure (it’s reassuring to know that the hard work involved in preparing and distributing these education materials is paying off). We spent considerable time just listening to their struggles, disappointments, uncertainties, achievements, concerns, determination and most of all, their positive outlook. They are already brainstorming ideas of how they can support “give back” by hosting a fundraiser to raise more funds for education and research.
We could easily have spent hours talking that night, but as the next event requiring my attention was only 12 hours away, it was time for us to hit the road. As Janice and I chatted on our drive home that night, we were inspired by the courage and strength TTP patients and their supporters exhibit.
One thing is for sure; I will be honored to represent the Answering TTP Foundation the next time that opportunity presents itself."
Why not look at running the Foundation’s next third-party fundraiser? Check out the website HERE for lots of great ideas for events that you can organize and run from the comfort of your local community! Third-party events are vital to the Foundation’s growth, as they not only help to raise life-saving TTP Awareness, but they also raise life-changing funds for TTP support, education and research! No event is too small or too great!
We can’t wait to help you with your event!