Relief Share donated lots of items made with love to the hospital, church, school and more

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Relief Share volunteers have been very active in taking care of the sick and needy this August.  There were city wide garage sales to go to for supplies and new items like coloring books, crayons, toys, and clothing.  Many hands make light work and beautiful donations arrived at Relief Share home office to be taken to where they were needed the most.

One of the really fun donations arriving lately were the tiny baby outfits and sleepers with beautifully handmade matching hats!  Thanks to Minerva, for her loving kindness for the little babies we love and serve, she makes gorgeous baby items out of the prettiest colors.

Relief Share volunteers managed to find a business closing out and bought scads of onesies and newborn baby outfits for the hospital maternity unit.  A donated wooden cradle was given to a church nursery for their toddlers. A box of school supplies full pencil crayons, masking tape, stapler, pencils, rulers and coloring crayons went to a local elementary teacher for her class.

Another way that folks help Relief Share get the supplies need is to shop on our Ebay auctions where 100% of the auctions go to Relief Share to help the sick and needy.

http://stores.ebay.com/dec2057

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Volunteers spend long hours writing auctions, packing auctions and dealing with ebay customers to make sure it is a win/win for everyone involved.

Relief Share has three flea market booths donated for our use.  It takes a lot of work  to fill the booths and keep them tidy and clean.  You will find unusual items in the booths, much of it donated from the founder’s home and their extended family loves to donate items for the booths as well.  Recently a purge of the linen closet yielded up lots of unused sheets that were no longer needed since the kids have grown up and moved away, so they were tagged at $2 a piece and sold at the flea market so folks who needed them in the community could get them for a low price for their families. Not everyone needs a donation, but they can use a little help stretching their budget, so our flea market booth helps with that.

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Where does it all go?  Who needs our donations?  This week donations were taken to Texas County Memorial Hospital to the maternity wing (baby clothing, bedding, and essentials), emergency department (comfort toys, coloring books, crayons, toy cars, etc), a teacher at the Houston Elementary School (school supplies), a local church nursery (a donated wooden cradle for the toddlers), and some individual donations of baby clothing and household goods.

You can help!  Clean out your closets for a good cause and send the boxes and packages to Relief Share, 6078 Lundy Rd, Houston, MO 65483-2225.  We are a 501 (c) 3 non-profit registered with the IRS and donations are tax deductible. Please include your name and mailing address in the donations so we can send you a thank you letter/tax receipt along with our gratitude and love.

We enjoy serving Gods tiniest children and their families and love to have you join our Relief Share family!

God bless the hands and hearts who put their love in action.

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Relief Share believes that the solution to inequality and suffering is ‘love in action’ through giving.

Science Has Spoken – Giving Makes You Happy!
By Eve Pearce

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Helping babies makes us happy and makes them happy, too!

Relief Share believes that the true solution to the inequalities and suffering that occurs every day in the world is giving… by sharing toys with children whose parents may have lost everything in a natural disaster, bedding with those who cannot afford to stay warm, quilts to keep the aged cozy we play a small part in curing social ills which could be eliminated on all collective levels. Interestingly, numerous scientific findings reveal that when we give, we don’t just help the recipients of our donations; we also take our first steps on a journey towards greater personal happiness. These findings should be shared with the world, for they are likely to lead to further giving. In this post, we share important research work on the link between giving and personal joy:

Happiness is a cycle: Researchers, Isen and Levin conducted a study which revealed that people were more likely to help others when they were happy; those in a positive mood were also more likely to lend a helping hand to researchers. Similar observations have subsequently been made with children. In another study, Rosenhan et. al. randomly assigned positive or negative mood states to children by asking them to reminisce, talk and think about specific memories. They were then given some candy and money, which they were told they could give away to other children. While both groups of kids consumed more sweets than the control group, the happy children gave larger amounts of money to other children. As is the case with adults, similar positive mood states (achieved through a sense of competence or success) resulted in greater giving.

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Happy people have been found to help others more in many contexts, including the work context: In one study, inexperienced workers with more positive moods and outlooks were found to be more likely to go the extra mile when helping customers by trying hard to find what the customer was looking for, and making a greater effort to provide quality customer service.

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Everyone can help

Giving also makes us happier: In an excellent report on giving, L. Anik et.al. run through the most useful recent studies on the subject. One study mentioned, carried out in 2007 showed that when persons donated money to a food bank, the ventral striatum region of their brain was activated. This area of the brain is involved in the experience of pleasure and reward, showing that giving does inherently make us happier. In Germany, meanwhile, Meier and Stutzer (2006) showed that those who performed volunteer work had greater life satisfaction. The study is vital because it shows that giving doesn’t always have to be about money. Sharing one’s time by making blankets or toys for needy children, for instance, is an equally important way to make a difference.

Giving is good for young and old alike: One particularly touching study involved elderly retired volunteers and infants. In this study, 10 elder volunteers with a mean age of 70 years were asked to massage infants at a nursery three times weekly for a period of three weeks. The elderly were also given massages at other times in the week. The researchers sought to observe the different effects caused by giving and receiving. The scientists found that “immediately after the first- and last-day sessions of giving massages, the elder retired volunteers had less anxiety and depression and lower stress hormones (salivary cortisol) levels. Over the three-week period, depression… decreased and lifestyle and health improved. These effects were not as strong for the three-week period when they received massage.” This is a particularly strong indication of the bond human beings share – the love for children and the need to care for others are almost universal feelings that we can fulfill by giving.

Volunteering and giving keeps awakens us to current problems facing society: When donating blankets, art supplies or toys, or volunteer our time to entertain children or the elderly, we begin to fully realize the vulnerability of the human condition. ‘There, for the grace of God, go you or I’ is a saying many volunteers repeat to themselves when faced with the devastation caused by poverty, HIV, and disease, not only in our area of the world but in third world countries as well. As we meet other volunteers and patients, we share and discover vital information such as the link between poverty and STDs, heart disease and Type II diabetes; or the devastating child poverty rate, even in so-called affluent countries. In this way, volunteering stops us from turning a blind eye to social problems and opens our eyes to the important role we can play in helping even just one person – with a little help, maybe that one well-fed, warm and happy child will one day change the world.

So….GET HAPPY! Get involved. Clean out your closets for a good cause!

Added to this article by President Carol Green/Relief Share:

Here are some of the items needed – go through the list, pick some, and send them to Relief Share, 6078 Lundy Rd., Houston, MO 65483-2225. Be sure to include your shipping information so we can send you a tax deductible receipt/thank you letter! We appreciate you!!

Baby Items: diapers, receiving blankets, sleepers, hats, booties, onesies, outfits, pants, tops, socks, swaddlers, baby cocoons, hygiene items (like soap, diaper cream, baby wash, q-tips, cotton balls, washcloths), diaper bags, soft toys, quilts, afghans, etc

Children’s items: clothing, toys, books, coloring books and crayons, videos, hair accessories, video games (these go to the hospital to keep kids occupied when spending long periods immobilized after surgery), soap, shampoo, conditioner, food (yes, many of our children don’t get enough to eat) – healthy snacks or Wal Mart gift cards for our volunteer shoppers to go get what is needed, such as milk, bread, cheese, oatmeal, basic fruits and vegetables etc. Quilts, afghans, etc

Adult Items: Clothing, quilts, afghans, books, hair items – brushes, combs, curling or straight irons (for women who are in homeless shelters or crisis centers due to domestic violence trying to get ready  to work), hygiene items, washcloths, towels, soap, shampoo, deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste, conditioner, food (basic healthy food items are great, WalMart gift cards for our volunteer shoppers to get what is needed is wonderful, too).  Just think what you would need if you suddenly found yourself homeless and without anything – that is what is needed.

Animals – collars, food, litter, litter boxes, leashes, bedding, toys, flea and tick prevention products.  We help a number of animal shelters with donations of needed items when they are donated in.

Supplies for volunteers to work with to make some of the items needed:

Knitting & Crochet Supplies: knitting machines, yarn, crochet hooks, knitting needles (Addi Turbo circular knitting needles in all sizes are a huge blessing for our volunteers to use – if you want to pick a size, the 14″ or 16″ length in size 7 is the most popular but we need the smaller sizes, like 5 and 6 for knitting booties and preemie hats, and larger circ needles for afghans are wonderful as well) We can never have enough knitting needles!  Stitch markers. Yarn winders are really needed right now! Patterns.

Quilting supplies – fabric, thread, needles, templates, patterns, batting, rotary cutters, mats, etc

Sewing Supplies – fabric, scissors, thread, elastic, velcro, lace, binding, embroidery thread, sewing machines, sergers, fabric cutting machines, etc.

Office supplies – paper, labels, price tags (for our flea market booth), post it notes, pens, pencils, markers, highlighters, computers, speakers, printers, copiers, digital cameras.  We have more than one location and when a machine breaks, it slows down the work.

Our dear volunteers and donors:  Thank you for everything you do – from sharing your smile with someone to giving of your time to sew, knit, crochet or simply spread the word.  We love all our volunteers who share their time, efforts, funds and love to make the lives of God’s sick and needy better.  Volunteers unselfishly drive our donations to where they need to go, spend time going to flea markets and yard sales to try to get what is needed to stretch our dollars, people who spend countless hours listing and shipping charity auctions on ebay for us, and wonderful people like Eve Pearce who wrote this article for us to help others understand what it is that Relief Share does to make the world a better place is what makes the miracle of love happen. Thank you so much!

A large Relief Share delivery just went out to the hospital emergency room!

aug2014dSo much fun, snuggles and cuddles.  Our Relief Share volunteers just delivered a large donation of stuffed teddy bears, coloring books and crayons, blankets and comfort toys to Texas County Emergency room for the ER staff to calm sick children with and the ambulances to give to children in crisis to help a rough situation turn into a do-able one for the babies and children treated.

Coloring books are purchased – usually from the Dollar Tree as that is where we get the nice big coloring books for the lowest prices. Crayons have been purchased from WalMart – prices are lower because of the back to school sales. We take the .25 packages of 24 crayons and re-seal them into 4 crayons per pack and then tape them with box tape on the front of every coloring book so we can make our donation budget stretch further.

There is a store here in Cabool, Missouri called Shetlers where we can purchase lovely stuffed animals and toys for a very discounted price. It is hit and miss, sometimes they have nothing for weeks and then…bingo…we hit the jackpot!  We RARELY get money donated to Relief Share so were thrilled when a donation came in from Ray Cox, a wonderful sweet veteran, to purchase the items needed recently.

We do have fundraisers – flea market booths donated by H & K Flea Market in Houston, Missouri and use the local buy/sell/trade lists to generate funds or purchase what is needed.  Items for the booths come from the homes of some of our volunteers that know we need to purchase supplies and have little money to work with.  We are so grateful for their help. It takes everyone doing their little bit to make a great big whole – or in other words, our synergy creates miracles for the sick and needy children and their families we serve.

If you would like to help, please send your donations of NEW items for the hospital emergency room to Relief Share, 6078 Lundy Rd., Houston, MO 65483-2225 The hospital takes only new toys, but Relief Share also takes gently used toys to distribute to individuals and families.  Accepted with love and donated with prayers