“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.” ~ Albert Camus
It feels like the blink of an eye since the holidays and the start of 2019, but so much has happened at Random Acts of Flowers in the first two months of the year. We’re excited to share with you all the news.Since January 1, we’ve made more than 3,000 deliveries of hope and encouragement, re-purposed more than 3,500 vases, and our dedicated volunteers have dedicated 900 hours.
And, just this month, we celebrated our 75,000th delivery in our community!
Those are incredible numbers, but what they reveal is the continued and growing need for the RAF mission. Too many people spend winter battling illness and isolation, and – thanks to your support – we are able to bring the brightness and hope of spring to them in the depths of the darkest season.
Join us for a special Flowers After Hours where you will be guided to create a spring arrangement in a vintage Teleflora/FTD ceramic container to take home and additional arrangements for delivery to a local healthcare facility!
Ticket price includes instruction, supplies, light snacks, champagne punch, water, and coffee. Feel free to bring a bottle of your favorite wine to enjoy!
Though Kimberly Coyne may be RAF Tampa Bay’s newest Board Member, she has supported the branch and its mission from the very beginning by donating vases and attending events. She has seen delivering hope from all perspectives and she knows that “no matter what touch point, from every volunteer to every person who donates, the simple thought of knowing that you are putting a smile on someone’s face warms your heart. Being a part of RAF and knowing that you help contribute to making people feel encouraged, thought of, and cared for is what the world needs.”
Personal connections and memories also motivate Kimberly to stay involved –
“My parents raised us to care about our community and to give back whenever and however we can. My grandmother was in a nursing home and she always loved when we would bring her flowers, it would always brighten her day. It’s nice knowing that RAF can make others who don’t have family/friends to bring them flowers, be able to experience the same happiness when they receive flowers from us.”
She also remembers how RAF affected the lives of some friends during a difficult time. “A family friend’s mother was hospitalized, and she received a bouquet from RAF which brightened her day after receiving difficult news from her doctor. A few weeks later, she was moved to hospice where she received another bouquet. The family relayed to me how much it meant to her and to them that these bouquets put a smile on their Mom’s face each time.”
For Kimberly, the value of RAF’s mission is easy to figure out. She loves “knowing that everything matters and nothing goes to waste. Every dollar donated goes to funding the mission, every flower and vase donated is recycled to help put a smile on someone’s face. I love that RAF is a community-based charity that works and gives back into our local area.”
SAVE THE DATE FOR RUN FOR THE ROSES
Our Annual Kentucky Derby Party returns Saturday, May 4th, 2019Mark your calendars for an afternoon
of mint juleps, big hats, and a whole lot of fun – all in support of the RAF mission!
WELCOMING RAF’S NEW COO JERILYN BLISS
RAF’s new National Chief Operating Officer, Jerilyn Bliss, joined the team at the beginning of February. She is bringing her expertise from her years at Scripps Networks Interactive (home of HGTV, Animal Planet, and Discovery) and will be helping all of RAF’s branches flourish in 2019 and far beyond! She will be based in Knoxville, but will make frequent visits to all the RAF branches.
To All,Thank You!
I was in the hospital for kidney failure. Your flowers lifted my spirits and my day.
Many smiles all day long!!
– Jim S.
A LITTLE SUNSHINE FOR ALL OF US
The first time volunteer Doris Goldman made an RAF delivery, she experienced first-hand the impact that delivering hope can have on a recipient (and on a volunteer). She recalls that “the first time I did a delivery one particular recipient said to me, ‘I cannot afford these flowers.’ And when I was able to tell her, ‘They are for you, from Random Acts of Flowers, no charge,’ we both welled up with tears.”In the two years since that first delivery, Doris has kept volunteering because she see the need for “giving new life to used flowers In order to bring joy and comfort to those in need.”
She does say her work as an RAF volunteer can be bittersweet sometimes. She says, “RAF brings me both sadness and great joy. Sadness in that I now realize how many people are desperate for a little sunshine in their lives and joy in that we bring some rays of hope and smiles to them.” Doris stays motivated to serve because she sees RAF’s growing success and because of the many great friends and memories she’s made with us.
HELP SOMEBODY EVERYDAY!
David Alexander of Halls Wholesale Florist takes his mantra of “help somebody everyday” to heart as one of RAF’s long-time and consistent floral partners. For nearly the last five years, his company has provided the raw material we need for delivering hope, and David loves to see his flowers turned into “smiles, happiness, and hope.”
Deliveries of Hope 76,000+ in Tampa Bay 399,000+ Nationwide
Vases Recycled 89,500+ in Tampa Bay 408,000+ Nationwide
Volunteer Hours 36,000+ in Tampa Bay 185,250+ Nationwide