JUST IN: Best Friends Animal Society Presents Dallas Animal Services With No Place Like Home Award

Best Friends Animal Society is considered one of the leading national animal welfare organization. It’s goal is to “end the killing of dogs and cars in America Shelters.” The sanctuary in Utah is located five miles north of Kanab, where nearly thousands of homeless animals have been healed in Dogtown, Cat World, Horse Haven, Marshall’s Piggy Paradise and Bunny House. It’s such a hit with animal lovers that they even have cabins and cottages in which guests may share with a deserving cat or dog for a night.

But Best Friends is very picky about which animal groups it works with. It was back in 2014 that the relationship between Best Friends and the Dallas Animal Shelter resulted in Stormy’s mom and dad rehabbing at the sanctuary.

Mama Stormy (File photo)

Mama Stormy (File photo)

Papa Stormy (File photo)

Papa Stormy (File photo)

The DAS has been very active in Best Friends’ “No More Homeless Pets Network” and made quite an impression on the organization with its efforts to adoption programs.

In fact Best Friends was so impressed that DAS was “singled out for the No Place Like Home Award.”

According to Best Friend’s Director of National Programs Holly Sizemore, “National advertising, word of mouth, and reduced adoption fees all help get the word out about these promotions and the pets who need homes. But what really drives these adoption promotions — what really helps thousands more dogs and cats find forever homes each year — is the participation of our No More Homeless Pets Network partners.

“Dallas Animal Services in particular stayed persistent in three out of four of the promotions and found homes for an amazing 1,007 dogs and cats. That’s the highest number of adoptions achieved by any participating municipal shelter.

“It’s so humbling to be able to honor the people who give so much of their personal time, energies, and dedication to helping save the lives of homeless pets,” Sizemore said. “Truly, they inspire me every day and give me the confidence to know that we can save them all.”

Rebecca Poling, Cate McManus and Jody Jones (File photo)

Rebecca Poling, Cate McManus and Jody Jones (File photo)

This type of success story has once again shone a spotlight on the DAS since the arrival of DAS Division Manager Jody Jones and Operations Manager Dr. Cate McManus.

According to Jody, “Participation in the No More Homeless Pets Network and other progressive placement programs are helping us save more lives than ever before. Collaborative efforts, hard work, and support from our community can change the face of municipal sheltering, and we’re proof of that. We are honored by this award and proud to be a Network partner.”

Dallas CASA Holds Housewarming Party For Parade Of Playhouse Partners And Pals

Just the day before NorthPark Center had a brief power outage. But on Sunday, July 12, there was no lack of power or people. The only thing that was lacking was a parking space at 5 p.m. when 100 of the Dallas CASA’s Parade of Playhouses partners and friends officially kicked off the annual fundraiser with a “Housewarming” at Green House Market with Chef Ben Hutchison cooking away.

Christie Carter, Adam Warner and Cindy Warner

Christie Carter, Adam Warner and Cindy Warner

Dallas CASA Board Member/Capital Campaign Vice-Chair Christie Carter admitted that the past year had been an odd mix. The good news was that thanks to educational programs, educators were better prepared to recognize and report cases of child abuse. The results have been a 9% increase in cases reported.

But that increase meant greater funds were needed to provide advocacy for the under-age victims.

When asked about the status of the Dallas CASA capital campaign to raise $37M within two years, Christie reported that they were less than $2M away.

Jim and Angela Thompson

Jim and Angela Thompson

In making remarks to the crowd including Honorary Co-Chairs Angela and Jim Thompson, Event Co-Chairs Fran and Mark Berg, Suzanne Bryan, Julies Slim, Michael Turner, Tyler Murph,  Matthias Stein with kiddos Hermann and Mathilda and Dallas CASA Board Chair Greg May, Dallas CASA Executive Director/President Kathleen LaValle gave special thanks to the Northwood Women’s Club who staff the raffle ticket tables throughout the center.

Matthias Stein

Matthias Stein



Greg May

Greg May

Kathleen LaValle

Kathleen LaValle

Still another organization that was acknowledged was Glazer’s that tackles the monumental task of delivering the houses unscratched.

She then recognized the builders who had created the 16 playhouses displayed from Dillards to Macy’s to Nordstroms.

Ironically, one of this year’s playhouse builders was OmniPlan that had also built NorthPark.

One guest reviewed the mini-mansions saying, “I don’t want to belittle others, but I think these playhouses are the best yet. Just outstanding!”

Kathleen also notified guests that if they wanted to vote for their favorite playhouse, they could do it online without purchasing a raffle ticket.

Want more pictures? Then check out MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

Piper And Mike Wyatt Left Rays Behind To Set Their Sights On Vine And Dine Fundraiser For Ability Connection Texas

Mike and Piper Wyatt (File photo)

Mike and Piper Wyatt (File photo)

Piper and Mike Wyatt just returned from Hawaii before the storms hit. While they’re all full of tales about nighttime snorkeling on the Big Island checking out the giant Manta Rays. Leave it to Piper to describe the underwater flappers as “gorgeous and graceful creatures… it was like watching an underwater ballet.”

But now the Wyatts are turning from Rays to fundraising for Ability Connection Texas. Yup, they’re co-chairing the Vine and Dine at Neiman Marcus Downtown on Thursday, November 19. The fundraiser will provide Ability Connection Texas with funds to “empower individuals to live the best life possible by removing barriers that inhibit independence and autonomy.

You remember November. It’s that month when there’s enough of a chill to party without “unwanted glistening” and the holidays are kicking into full gear.

Kevin Garvin (File photo)

Kevin Garvin (File photo)

Back to Vine and Dine. After the cocktail reception at 6 p.m. on the store’s ground level, guests will move up to the sixth floor Zodiac Room for a feast prepared by NM Chef Extraordinaire Kevin Garvin complete with wines. Then the action begins with the live auction of “a limited number of coveted items.”

Piper also reports, “There is also the opportunity to sponsor an Ability Connection client by donating funds to purchase a communication device and give a person with a disability the chance to speak, perhaps for the very first time.”

BTW, the next time you stroll through Klyde Warren Park’s My Best Friend’s Park with your fav pooch, check out the fire hydrant that is very dog friendly. Piper and Mike Wyatt sponsored it along with John Zogg and his daughter Ellie, Georgia and Gwyneth. It’s dedication last November with the help of a Papillion that just couldn’t wait.

North Texas Giving Day Booster: Community Opportunities Inc.

“What does a BEE have to do with helping people?

Community Opportunities Bee*

Community Opportunities Bee*

“Well, at our agency, Community Opportunities Inc, it has a lot to do with helping people. We got our start in the mid 90’s after a state funding cutback was forcing disabilities support programs to close, leaving many of our clients without the services to help them develop their skills further than what public education did.

“When our agency decided we should pick a mascot to represent what we do the bumble bee became the obvious choice. It has been proven that the bumble bee should not fly as their bodies are too heavy for their wings. However, no one has let the bee know and it flies anyway. The people we serve face many challenges yet they also “fly” because, just like the bee, no one told them they weren’t supposed to.

“Today at Community Opportunities Inc., we’re still serving adults and teens with intellectual and developmental disabilities. We encourage our guys to handle all difficult tasks to the best of their abilities and move forward. We spend most of our days trying to teach and create learning opportunities — for everyone — and of course, we want to have fun too!   The funding we receive from North Texas Giving Day helps us teach new skills, go on more trips, and buy new equipment, and maybe one day to add a second location so we can serve more people!

“Above all, we are always looking for ways to enrich people’s lives and the smallest contribution can do that!! Personally, I learn something new every day and most of the time the teachers are the people we serve!

Community Opportunities woodcrafters items*

Community Opportunities woodcrafters items*

“It has gotten more difficult over the years but we also strive to find ways for our guys to make money. Recently, we’ve started making all kinds of crafts from scrap wood that is donated to us, and we’ve been pretty successful. We have some very creative people who come to our workshop and they are having a blast making all kinds of “stuff” to sell. They sign their work and our customers love meeting the artist.

Jellstone camping trip*

Jellstone camping trip*

“The summer is extra busy for us because we swim and go to the movies every week. We bowl every other week and we work in all kinds of other field trips in between. Last week we added a recorder class and our musicians are working on songs for our Christmas party! One of our parents is donating art supplies and we have a new volunteer who is an art teacher.

“We have been able to provide all these activities to help people because we have the best staff and volunteers who continue to come up with new ideas and search out ways for our guys to “BEE” Creative, Optimistic, and Incredible!  Above all — no matter what we’re doing — we try and “BEE” our best!

On September 17, help us BEE our best! From 6 a.m. to midnight every $25 donation will be amplified by bonus funds that will keep our bees flying!”

-By Kim Akers, Community Opportunities Inc. Executive Director

* Photo credit: Pam Masters 
* Graphic and photos provided by Community Opportunities Inc.

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Mosaic Family Services’ 6th Annual Gala…

Mosaic Family Services 6th Annual Gala*

According to Mosaic Family Services’ 6th Annual Gala Co-Chair Melissa Green, “A close friend’s stepdaughter was sex trafficked in Florida and California. As she would share with me the efforts to find her, it seemed unbelievable to me that this was happening here and to someone that I knew. They did find her, thankfully. I […]

MySweetCharity Photo Gallery Alert: Dallas CASA Housewarming Party…

Jim and Angela Thompson

While Dallas CASA’s Parade of Playhouses was unveiled Thursday, July 9, at NorthPark, the official kick-off party was held the following Sunday, July 12, at Green House Market with 100 builders, sponsors and buddies. The post is being prepped. So, check out the photos over on MySweetCharity Photo Gallery now.

JUST IN: David Biegler Receives Texas Healthcare Trustees’ 2015 Founders’…

It’s always nice to hear a local honored by a state organization. That’s especially true when it comes to the nonprofit sector. Well, one of those situations took place Friday in Austin. Children’s Health Board of Directors Chair David Biegler received the 2015 Founders’ Award from the Texas Healthcare Trustees (THT) “in recognition of his […]

Community Foundations Of Texas’ Brent Christopher Kicks Off North Texas Giving Day…

North Texas Giving Day veterans*

In preparation for the Communities Foundation of Texas’ mega-fundraising North Texas Giving Day on Thursday, September 17, MySweetCharity will be running posts by some of the amazing nonprofits and people that are participating this year. To get things going, CFT CEO/President Brent “Mr. Bowtie” Christopher opens the series: “It is that time of year again! […]

A Mother’s Quandary On How To Help Her Toddler Understand Alzheimer’s…

A young mom of a beautiful little chap was both grateful and upset. Yes, she was indeed thankful that her picture-perfect son was sweet, loving and in very good health. He was surrounded by loving parents and big sisters. But the mom confessed that despite having what appeared to be the wished-for family, there was […]

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MySweetCharity Opportunity: Saint Valentine’s Day Luncheon & Fashion Show…

Gina Betts and Michael Flores*

According to Saint Valentine’s Day Luncheon & Fashion Show® 2016 Committee Co-Chairs Gina Betts and Michael Flores, “The Saint Valentine’s Day Luncheon & Fashion Show®, with fashions by Highland Park Village, has become one of the premier charity luncheons in Dallas with a rich history. This 2016 event is presented by Nancy C. and Richard […]

Spring Breaks Appear To Be Cruising All Over The Weeks Of March…

In putting together the upcoming events, it looks like the various school systems are going in different directions. This past year various districts and private schools were on the same page having spring breaks the same week. Not so for 2016! Here’s the scheduled breakdown of just a few so far March 7-11: Highland Park […]

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Back To School Drive…

GameStop collection*

According to Community Partners of Dallas Board Chair Jennifer Evans Morris, “This year Community Partners of Dallas (CPD) will host its 22nd annual Back to School Drive beginning Saturday, August 1 through Monday, August 31, 2015. Throughout the month, CPD, The Container Store and individuals and organizations throughout Dallas will collect new school supplies for abused and neglected children […]

Mary Kay Foundation’s Suits For Shelters Had Guests In The Pink To Rally Clothes For…

Bert Burkhalter

On Thursday, July 9, Dallas was on the verge of the pink invasion. Yup, it was time for the annual Mary Kay Convention. But it was also the evening of the “Think Pink” event at Tootsies for The Mary Kay Foundation’s Suits for Shelters program with cocktails on the ground floor and a fashion show […]

MySweetCharity Opportunity: 2015 March Of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction…

Amy Turner and Sunie Solomon*

According to 2015 March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction Dallas Events Co-Chairs Sunie Solomon and Amy Turner, “You may not know it, but if you were born in the United States in the last 77 years, you share something special with millions of Americans. You are a March of Dimes baby. “This incredible organization has […]