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Can you guess what you made possible on #GivingTuesday?

December 1, 2016
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Because of you, on #GivingTuesday, we hit our donation goal of $12,775! Combined with our match from Bank of America, this means we will be able to house two more homeless families than we’d planned on in 2017.
 
Their safety would not have been possible without you. Never doubt that your donations, your tweets, posts and shares, your volunteerism and your support makes a difference. Thank you for being the best friend Bridge Communities could ask for!
To learn more ways you can help the families served by Bridge Communities, please visit http://www.bridgecommunities.org.

Will you Give a Tuesday on #GivingTuesday?

November 1, 2016
BridgeCommunities_GivingTuesday_logoLast year, you came to our rescue in a big way.
     For the first time, Bridge Communities participated in #GivingTuesday, the national day of charitable giving. The end of the year was nearing, and time and money were running out. We asked if you’d help us raise $4,550–one night of housing for each of the 130 homeless families served by Bridge Communities in a year.
     We asked–and boy, you answered! You generously gave not 130, but 229 nights of housing. You gave safety and security to homeless families when they needed you most, and we will always be grateful to you. Thank you!
     This #GivingTuesday, November 29, will you Give a Tuesday in honor of the next homeless families that desperately need a home?
     We have a housing opportunity to help two more homeless families than we’d planned on–but we can only do it with your help. We need to raise $12,775 to give these families a better future. And, Bank of America has agreed to match your #GivingTuesday donation, dollar for dollar! That means that when you give a night of housing for one homeless family, another homeless family will receive another night of housing, too.
     Will you help them? Thanks to this generous match, your $35 gift is enough to give not one, but two homeless families a night of housing in a warm, safe apartment. Not only that, you’ll connect them to all the tools they need–mentoring, financial counseling, job coaching, tutoring, counseling and more–so that they can recover from the trauma of homelessness.
     Please Give a Tuesday for $35 in honor of #GivingTuesday, and help two more homeless families break free from poverty. 
     Keep an eye out this month for more on #GivingTuesday, as we’ll let you know more on how you can save families from homelessness.
     Thank you for being a friend to the families of Bridge Communities, and for being there when they need you the most.
With gratitude to our #GivingTuesday match
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Because of you, Kelly’s family is safe

October 17, 2016

kellyfamilyAs Kelly’s story shows, the living situation and security of a family can change in the blink of an eye.

After her divorce, Kelly and her three kids–Maddie, Kyle and Becca–were grateful to move into her brother’s house in Warrenville. A few years passed, life settled down, and Kelly even found love again.

Then, her brother planned to sell his home, and Kelly and her new fiance agreed to buy it. But, just days before the closing, she discovered her fiance’s infidelity. She broke off her engagement, but her troubles were far from over. Because soon, she and her children would have nowhere to live.

But, you gave them new hope when they found Bridge Communities.

Your generosity has given Kelly’s family a safe home, stability, and has even helped launch Kelly into a successful career. Read more about their inspiring story in our Fall Connections newsletter, and know that you played a major role in their success!

In this issue, you’ll also read about our latest graduate to own a Habitat for Humanity house; meet LRC volunteer Lisa Hjorth; learn more about Sleep Out Saturday on November 5, and more!

Because of you, 130+ homeless families have a safe haven with Bridge Communities in 2016, and will recover from the traumas caused by homelessness. Please consider making a gift so that the next 130 can recover, too. Thank you for being a friend to Bridge families when they need you the most.

Sleep Out or Sleep In–It’s Up To You!

October 10, 2016

SOS_2016Now is your opportunity to make #HomelessNoMore a reality for 130+ Bridge Communities families! Sleep Out Saturday is less than a month away, and there’s still time to get involved! Here’s why you’ll want to join us on November 5:

Sleep Out or Sleep In: Join the movement that stands apart and register for Sleep Out Saturday! This year, you and your group can collect pledges and Sleep Out as an individual or group in solidarity with homeless families; or, you can Sleep In and fundraise in the spirit of helping our most vulnerable families, and focus on the issues of homelessness without sleeping outside on November 5.

We Don’t Just Sleep Out–We Rock Out: You and all your friends and neighbors are invited to join us at a live community benefit concert in downtown Glen Ellyn! The concert begins on November 5 at 6 PM, featuring the School of Rock Glen Ellyn and additional guests, leading into the fun-filled and inspiring Sleep Out Saturday rally, with testimonials from Bridge families and more. P.S. Busing to the concert is provided for groups from your Sleep Out site and back after the show!

Your Volunteer Hours Count: We know you’re a valuable volunteer by raising pledges and sleeping out, and we’ll provide each member of your group with a signed certificate that shows he or she volunteered 20 service hours with Bridge Communities. (E-mail chad.pedigo@bridgecommunities.org for details!)

You are Making #HomelessNoMore a Reality: Every dollar raised from Sleep Out Saturday directly assists homeless families in the Bridge Communities transitional housing program, funding the housing, employment training, mentoring, case management, plus tutoring and other programs for homeless children. YOU are giving them the tools so they will recover from the trauma of homelessness, and never become homeless again!

If you have already registered your group–thank you! And if you have not done so yet, we hope you’ll join us at Sleep Out Saturday on November 5.

Please contact chad.pedigo@bridgecommunities.org or 630-545-0610 x19 with any questions. Bridge Communities is excited to welcome you to Sleep Out Saturday 2016!

Still time to sign up! Run on behalf of Bridge families on October 23

September 29, 2016

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The Naperville Marathon races will be held on October 23, 2016, and YOU can be a hero for Bridge families! Sign up to run and fundraise in their honor today! Runners will also receive a registration discount to use on the Naperville Marathon website.

Signing up is easy:

-First, click here to become a Charity Hero for Bridge Communities and receive your charity discount code

-Second, click here to complete your registration on the Naperville Marathon’s website. Type in “CHARITY” as the Access Code, and then use your charity discount code when prompted.

Runners commit to raising $300 for Bridge Communities, and we’ll help you along your way: You’ll also be provided with fundraising tips and a personal online fundraising page on the Bridge Communities website.

Please contact us with any questions at chad.pedigo@bridgecommunities.org, and we’ll look forward to running alongside you on race day!

Thanks for joining us at the Glen Ellyn Backyard BBQ!

September 12, 2016

14258146_1310907765609563_1611323934321853300_oThis year, summer didn’t end on Labor Day! The Glen Ellyn Backyard BBQ returned for its 8th year on Saturday, September 10. Thousands of community members joined us for the “ProteinPalooza,” a day of food, family-friendly activities, concerts and of course, barbecue!

Attendees enjoyed the sounds of outstanding bands, including The Neverly Brothers, Expo 76 and the Total Pro Horns, Bill “The Buddha” Dickens, and the Glen Ellyn School of Rock Instructors, and noshed on perfect festival food from Steamboat Barbeque, Real Urban BBQ, The Stand, Skuddlebutts and Cap May Crab Cake Factory. The kids had a blast at the Piglet Playland, featuring a bounce house, dunk tank and more!

More than 60 teams entered the barbecue competition, and the winners were:

Best Ribs:
Birdman’s BBQ

Best Chicken:
South Side Pit Men

Best Dish:
RW + B BBQ

Best Sauce (Judged):
The Fabulous Weber Boys

People’s Choice Sauce:
Hoggystyle BBQ

Glen Ellyn Cup:
Spork

To see the BBQ’s photo gallery, visit the Glen Ellyn Backyard BBQ Facebook page

All proceeds from the event went directly to help the homeless families served by Bridge Communities. Thank you for your support, and we can’t wait to see you next year!

The event was made possible thanks to the support of our generous sponsors:

King of the Stage:
Steamboat Barbeque

Piglet Playland:
Farmers Insurance

Festival:
95.9 The River
Coldwell Banker Charitable Foundation
Eric Friedemann
Flood Brothers
Novatoo Audio Visual
Pit Stop
Sportsmed Wheaton Orthopaedics
Two Brothers Artisan Brewing

Prime Cut:
Glen Ellyn Lions Club
Harry B. Cotter Allstate Agency
House of Graphics
Illinois Barbecue Society
John Johanneson
Lekatsos Team
PJ’s Camera and Photo
Santanna Energy Services
Wheaton Yamaha Music School

 

 

We’re proud to announce our scholarship recipients!

August 31, 2016
Ryan 1We are so happy to introduce you to two outstanding Bridge kids, Daniela and Ryan. As teenagers, they faced all the same challenges as their peers–but they had to deal with the unique struggles of homelessness, too.

 

It wasn’t easy. It was something no teenager should ever have to worry about.

 

But, once their families joined Bridge Communities, you gave them the tools they needed to succeed. They had a safe home, and could concentrate on getting back on track. And, this past spring, they both graduated from high school with flying colors!

 

There’s more: Because of your generosity, Daniela and Ryan each started college this fall with a $1,000 scholarship!

 

Ryan has just entered the freshman class of Bradley University as an International Business major, and Daniela has begun her studies at Concordia University, pursuing a BA in Health Care Management.
Your support means that Ryan and Daniela could persevere and overcome the challenges that came along with homelessness. Thank you for believing in them!

Daniela and Ryan are on the road to success, but there are still more than 200 Bridge kids that need your help this year. And, with the new school year starting, it’s the perfect time for you to get involved! You can volunteer as a tutor, help out with Kids’ Clubs at a Learning Resource Center, or make a gift so that more kids like Daniela and Ryan can break the cycle of homelessness.

 

If you’d like to get involved and connect more kids like Ryan and Daniela to a better and brighter future, please e-mail Jill Garbaliauskas, Director of Children’s Programs, at jill.g@bridgecommunities.org or call  815-955-9558.

 

Thank you again for transforming the futures of Ryan, Daniela and all Bridge children!
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