Wednesday, August 12, 2015

In 5/Under 5 Challenge & Guest Blog: Happy Birthday to Tate!

My favorite word is community. If you've been following ITLT for a little while now, you probably already figured that out. I love finding creative acts of kindness that can benefit a community by bring together a community. Sometimes, however, members of our #TeamITLT community find those opportunities first! In these situations, I am so beyond touched that someone thought "Hey, that looks like a great ITLT project," and took the time to reach out to me, that I offer it right back to them. Today, I'm honored to introduce Dally, who always goes above and beyond and hopped on our team as soon as she learned what we were about. She hosts ITLT-like workshops at a center where she volunteers, and she wanted to share this project with us. It's about time she guest blogs for for ITLT! 

PS. The last time we offered a project similar to this one, we had #TeamITLT members share their photos on Instagram from New Jersey, Texas, Los Angeles, South Carolina, and England; we can't wait to find out from where you're participating!

And now, from Dally:

"Hello!" to everyone out there reading my post. My name is Dally and as a member of this incredible organization, I’m excited to share a special new #in5under5 challenge. I became involved with ITLT during my transition from community college to university. Feeling like I had no support system while away at school, I was determined to change that. I needed to feel as though I could spread small tokens of love to others, to somehow make a difference in their lives. Thanks to this organization, I’m now doing just that.

If you’re new to ITLT, the project I’m about to discuss is one that can be accomplished within five minutes and for under five dollars. It's a great simple way to spread love, usually requested by someone close to the recipient. Like previous in 5/under 5 challenges, this project is a birthday card! I know from experience what the power of a small gesture like this can do, so I would love if you could take a few moments to help us make this a remarkable birthday for Tate.

On August 30th, Tate Malone turns 16 years old. As his family was brainstorming for his upcoming birthday, Tate said he would like a party and birthday cards. His mother shared that Tate loves when people read to him and that he loves bright colors. Tate has cerebral palsy. Taking care of Tate has become a full time job for his mother, Tambra. The job became even more stressful since his father was diagnosed with a brain condition that left him needing care as well. Like most mothers, Tambra wants to show her son that "he can do anything and he can be anything." I come to you with his project today because there is no better community to help her make this a memorable birthday than ITLT.

Our favorite take-away from the ABC News article is:
Though Tate is limited in his abilities to communicate, Malone said her son loves people. She’s asking for the community’s help to show Tate he’s loved and supported. "I thought it would be good for the community to get to come out and get to know him and know more about his condition," she said. "I want to encourage others not to be trapped inside just because they have a condition."

If you'd like to join us, please send your birthday cards here:
Tate Malone
233 Meadowbrook Lane
Danville, VA 24540

As always, let us know that you're participating in this project!
Share a photo of your birthday card with us on Instagram:
@itsthelittlethingsdotme #TeamITLT

We want to regram your awesome efforts!