MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: You

It’s been interesting to read the responses from the Make-Believe-Benefactors. Surprisingly the arts, education and environmental causes were not as pressing as health, first responders and the needy.

An email arrived in the MySweetCharity mailbox that described the thought process that many people experienced:

“Being on several boards and with a history of raising money for children, I was bound by responsibility to answer in one of those directions.  But then I thought “what is the REAL need?”  What need is NOT being met?  Where could this money go that would cause a “reverse” direction for those headed down the road of despair?

“Then I turned to my Christian faith/church and thought, ‘What is the church doing?  Are they just building larger structures and more programs for those in attendance or is there truly an outreach?  Are they displaying the love of GOD to ALL people?  How could a donor impact that?  Does that mean strings attached or do you depend on the Hand of God to protect your gift?’

“This probably is NOT what you had wanted the answer to be.

“With all of that written, you stretched me at just the perfect time of the year.  Nothing else would have made my head hurt like this at THIS a busy time.”

Thank you all for participating in this end-of-the-year brain scratcher as a Make-Believe-Benefactor or as an observer. But let’s not let it end here. Next time you’re at a dinner or just sitting around with friends and/or family, ask them what they would do with their million dollars. You just might be surprised and pleased with the choices and reasons.

All Aboard For The Trains At NorthPark

It’s the last weekend for The Trains at NorthPark benefiting the Ronald McDonald House of Dallas. With 1,600 feet of track, the miniature locomotives choo choo through the country with Dallas landmarks like downtown Dallas, the Cotton Bowl and the State Fair.

It’s truly amazing for kids of all ages. Speaking of which, admission is $6 for adults and $3 for children ages 2 to 12 and senior citizens (65 and older). Munchkins under the age of 2 get in free.

Final weekend hours are Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. And don’t forget it’s upstairs between Neimans and Nordstrom’s near Barney’s.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Jan Strimple

Jan Strimple

“I would endorse my check to Mayor Tom Leppert, and ask him to distribute it in the following way:

  • $ 250,000 to plant more trees in our city.  We need their beauty!
  • $ 500,000 to Girls, Inc. Their programs alter the thought processes and therefore the futures of thousands of young women in our area.  Raising the horizons of possibility of under-privileged youth directly impacts the heart of our city.
  • $ 250,000 to Promising Youth Alliance because encouraging personal responsibility and leadership development results in more citizens who contribute to our community and fewer that take.”

Jan Strimple

New Year’s Eve Isn’t All Fun For Paws And Claws

You’ve made reservations for a swell evening tonight, or you’re heading down to Victory Plaza to watch the Pete and Dale show. And you certainly don’t need to be reminded not to drive drunk.

But did you know that New Year’s Eve can spell “trouble” for animals. Because of fireworks and other loud noises this evening, dogs and cats can go ballistic and flee. So, think ahead. It’s not too late to get them microchipped. And lock up the pooch and feline tonight before you head out.

If your critter needs medical assistance tonight, remember there are three emergency animal clinics that will be open.

Last Call For 2010 Donations

It’s not too late to make that donation to a nonprofit. You can still get a tax deduction and help a charity. So, make out that check or take those unwanted clothes to a group in need.

And don’t forget to ask for a receipt. You’ll make your accountant very happy.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Lynn McBee

Lynn McBee

“I would give $1million to the capital campaign that will soon launch to build a new Residential Treatment Center for The Letot Center.  The Letot Center is the central system for runaway youth and their families in Dallas County. With the growing  human trafficking and  sex trade problems, I believe it is critical that this facility be built now to give these girls somewhere to go, feel loved, be taken care of,  start the rehabilitation process and be reunited with their families.”

Lynn McBee

Share-The-Date: 2011 Destiny Awards

Thursday, March 3: Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr. will be the featured speaker at the 2011 Destiny Awards luncheon at Belo Mansion benefiting St. Philip’s School and Community Center. If Dr. Gates’ name is familiar but doesn’t click immediate recognition, he just happens to be an American literary critic, educator, scholar, writer, editor, and public intellectual. In addition to his incredible academic credentials, he’s also known for having a beer with President Obama.

For luncheon information, call 214.421.5221 Ext. 238.


MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: James Hatcher

James Hatcher

Red Cross-because they help so many; especially those in dire emergencies!

A neighbor’s house burned down in the middle of the night last week.

The Red Cross arrived shortly after the fire trucks………….”

James Hatcher

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Lee Bailey

Lee Bailey

“Would that I did!  Actually, even the thought of it is daunting.

Someone once said to me that there are no undeserving charities and that you have to choose wisely.  Dallas has been blessed with many kind, and generous, benefactors to a multitude of charitable recipients.  But, your question, Ms. Sweet Charity, has drawn my thought to our First Responders*.

Whether we, as individuals, interact with them daily or sporadically, our First Responders are always there for us, the citizens of Dallas, 24/7, 365 days of the year.  They have chosen an often thankless profession and too many of us take their service for granted.  To enrich them with training, a piece of equipment, or whatever might speak to my/our appreciation of their commitment would be my choice — my gift to the betterment of Dallas.”

Lee Bailey

* Firemen, law enforcement officers, EMTs, paramedics and nurses.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Andrew Stevens

Andrew Stevens

“I’d give it to the Dallas Film Commission as a city subsidy to attract all of the ancillary revenues film and TV production bring to a community and large and small businesses. Perhaps this would be a beginning which would allow our city and state to compete with neighboring state subsidies which attract most productions.”

Andrew Stevens

Youngsters In Desperate Need

Six adorable puppies were born 3 1/2 weeks ago to an unwed mother. and a smooth-talking wirehair terrier.  The owners of the mother turned the puppies in at the Dallas Animal Shelter yesterday and kept the mother.

Situation: Puppies are in desperate need of fostering since they were too young to be weaned. Mother is still in desperate need of being spayed. Unfortunately, she is possessed by owners who are cold enough to turn in puppies too young to be separated from their mother. The owners are also allowing “mom” to be breedable.

Shout out: If you can foster the puppies, contact Mark Cooper at 214.670.8298 ([email protected]) or Janet Henderson ([email protected]).

Not to pressure you, but the officer who kept them last night was only able to do it for one night.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Lee Ann White

Lee Ann White

“I would make my check payable to the Phoenix House of Dallas, due to their commitment toward saving as many young lives as possible from the helpless consequences caused by addiction.  I would hope my gift would help this important and life-changing organization rescue children and young adults who were born into the patterns of addiction and into a home where drugs and alcohol are considered a normal part of life.  In addition to helping Phoenix House itself, I would ask that part of my gift be used toward research and discovering a cure for this deadly disease.  For families struggling with addiction, all are affected.  It’s an epidemic in the United States, one that is far more serious than even most health professionals care to acknowledge.  It’s also becoming more dangerous from a geo-political standpoint, when you consider how drug lords are threatening our nation’s well-being from across our boarders on a daily basis.  This is an increasingly hazardous problem that we must begin addressing at the local level by supporting such organizations as Phoenix House before we can combat and defeat our nation’s most dangerous killer.”

Lee Ann White


MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Wick Allison

Wick Allison

“I would direct it to the St Vincent de Paul Society, because 99% of donations go directly to the deserving poor through a city-wide network of volunteers who visit and vet recipients personally.”

Wick Allison

Share-The-Date: Pride Pharmacy USA Toast To Life Gala

Saturday, February 26: Pride Pharmacy USA has signed up for the second year in a row to be the title sponsor for Resource Center Dallas‘ “Toast to Life Gala 2011.” The theme this year is “Cirque de la Vie” and is expected to have an attendance of 800 at F.I.G.

“We are extraordinarily grateful for Pride Pharmacy’s continuing, generous support of Toast To Life,” said Cece Cox, executive director of the Center. “With more than 2100 clients living with HIV and AIDS, strong community backing like this for us is vital for us to continue providing critical services, including dental care, hot meals, a food pantry and insurance assistance.”

Proceeds benefit the HIV/AIDS programs and service of Resource Center Dallas. You did know that since it began in 1999, Toast to Life has raised more than $2.1 million. You also knew that AIDS is not a past-tense disease, didn’t you?


MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Erin Mathews

Erin Mathews

“Without a moment’s hesitation, I would endorse that million dollar check to Mental Health America of Greater Dallas. Over the past decades, public funding for the mentally ill has steadily decreased and has contributed to the rise in homelessness and the indigent. Organizations such as this provide much needed services to those who suffer and offer programs for prevention and support in Dallas County. I would ask that the donation honor the memory of my father, Hayden Donahue, M. D., a pioneer in the care and treatment of the mentally ill and a tireless advocate.”

Erin Mathews

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Christopher Wynn

Christopher Wynn

“On the human side, I would present that check to The Bridge, Dallas’ homeless assistance center. I became more aware of this group after Shannon Wynne‘s fundraiser for them at The Moth. I also recall that as of last month they were facing a $200,000 budget shortfall for the year and could use the boost.

On the creature side, I would give those funds to the SPCA of Texas. My two Boston Terriers are both rescue dogs who were scheduled to be put down. Every time I snuggle with them I’m reminded of how precious life is.”

Christopher Wynn

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Barbara Daseke

Barbara Daseke

“There are so many worthy causes, it would be hard to decide.  I think I would endorse my check to the Water Tower Theatre in Addison.  This theater continuously wins praise and awards.  Their performances are always sold out and their outreach program is wonderful.  There is no room for growth in their current theater building.  I feel my check would go a long ways to realize a new larger theater with newfound success and recognition.”

Barbara Daseke

Merry Christmas And Thank You!

MySweetCharity wishes everyone a very “Merry Christmas!” whether it’s politically correct or not.

On this day when we are especially grateful to so many including

  • The generous and supportive advertisers who have truly made MSC possible. If it weren’t for them, there would be no MSC.You may not have noticed but PlainsCapital Bank was the first to sign up and has been with MSC ever since.
  • Cattle Barons Ball, Crystal Charity Ball and TACA for allowing us to be their blog sponsors.
  • The nonprofits that have allowed MSC to cover their news and events.
  • The public relations people who have patiently tolerated MSC’s demands for instant turn around of information and photos.
  • The professional photographers who have time and time again provided advice and spare batteries when the MSC super-duper Instamatic failed.
  • Members of the media who have encouraged MSC to carry on a “daily conversation for the good of Dallas.” A special thanks goes to Tim “Not As Snarky As He Seems” Rogers at D Magazine and People Newspapers’ publisher Karen Mordecai and managing editor Dan Koller, who have allowed MSC to appear in their publications.
  • Wick Allison, who came up with the original concept of MSC.
  • Glenn Hunter, who has been forced to step out of his comfort zone and confront women with such thought-provoking questions as, “So who designed your gown?”and
  • Most importantly, you the members of the MSC community. We have learned from you and will continue to do so. You keep us on our toes and inspire us.

Thank you.


Your Very Best Friend In The Entire World

This weekend be especially good to yourself. Don’t overdo the eating and drinking. Do drive safely. In other words, treat yourself like you would your best friend. You are very important to all.

If perhaps you do know someone who is not enjoying the holiday in a healthy manner, please know that there are organizations with professionals who can help.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: John Crawford

John Crawford

“The first answer is that I would endorse the check over to Downtown Dallas Inc. as there no one or organization that does a better job for the “betterment of Dallas” than DDI—As Goes Downtown, So Goes Dallas!!  If you consider where we were 10 years ago and compare the vision that is now reality, it’s no contest.

If you are looking for something a little less self serving (although I am still convinced the first answer is correct) and   approaches “betterment” differently, the recipient would be The Salvation Army.  There are so many options in Dallas to choose from that do a wonderful job in a variety of ways; the Red Cross, United Way, Genesis Women’s Shelter and the list goes on and on and on.  However, The Salvation Army’s slogan of “Doing the Most Good” literally says it all as it seeks to create a better Dallas and a better world through prayers, gifts and services.”

John Crawford

Share-A-Date: Barbara Bush’s “A Celebration of Reading”

Monday, November 7, 2011: Despite the holidays, Barbara Bush is already working on the 10th annual “A Celebration of Reading.”  As you can guess, grandchildren Mandi and George P. Bush are ramrodding the event locally.

We’ll keep you up to date on who the authors will be.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Christine Allison

Christine Allison

ProPublica would be my recipient. It’s an independent team of investigative journalists who work on stories in the public interest with ‘moral force.’ They produce ‘journalism that shines a light on exploitation of the weak by the strong and on the failures of those with power to vindicate the trust placed in them.’ Newspapers and news organizations have declining budgets, and the biggest loser is the citizenry. ProPublica has done heroic, important work, and it would be a dream to have their team focus on Dallas.”

Christine Allison

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Ron Chapman

Ron Chapman

“I would endorse the check to Ruth Collins Altshuler and let her make the decisions as she does so well with her own million dollar checks.

(Answer #2) I would endorse the check to Ross Perot knowing he’d make certain the monies did the most good….and he’d follow up to confirm that he’s right.

(Answer  #3) I would endorse the check over to the Visiting Nurses Association which cares for those who can’t get out of their homes.  Until someone you know needs them…it’s hard to comprehend how important they are.”

Ron Chapman

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Kersten Rettig

Kersten Rettig

“I would love to have the Child and Family Guidance Center receive $1 million in funding so they can provide mental health services for at-risk and at-need families in Dallas.  Mental health issues are a devastating problem in our community and it is the root cause of addiction, child abuse, domestic abuse, economic problems and so many other social ailments.  The Child and Family Guidance Center isn’t the most glamorous, not the most fashionable, not the most high-profile, but I dare say it is one of the most valuable organizations in Dallas.”

Kersten Rettig