Statewide Swimsuit and Towel Drive

Hey, It’s BigHouse!

Hey everyone, it’s BigHouse again! It is officially spring which means it is Swimsuit and Towel Drive time! Swimsuit and Towel Drive started in 2009 to collect new swimsuits and towels for children in foster care across the state. Yes, the ENTIRE state of Alabama! The annual drive started off as a huge hit and has quickly become one of our favorite things to do.

Each towel is embroidered with the child’s name to make the gift extra special. This makes the gift uniquely their own and something they can cherish year after year. We love knowing that something that may seem so small can impact a child’s life and give them something to smile about.

Over the past eight years, Swimsuit and Towel Drive has grown tremendously. We have delivered over 10,000 swimsuit and towel packages across the state to children in foster care. As you can imagine, this does not happen without our incredible community. We rely on our community to help donate swimsuits and towels and to help embroider the towels. We are so thankful to have such incredible support! It makes this process go smoothly and quickly!

This year, the drive will run through the end of April. It takes time but it allows us the ability to truly provide each child with a unique and special gift. We believe each personalized towel tells the child, “You are valued by your community and loved by your Heavenly Father.” To ensure this message is received, we place a postcard in each package telling the child just that.

We are so excited for this year’s Swimsuit and Towel Drive to get started! If you would like to donate to the drive, there are drop-off locations around the community and donations can be dropped off at BigHouse as well. Also, if you are interested in helping us embroider towels, please contact us by email at bighouse@ourbighouse.org. We can’t to make this year’s drive the best yet!

Glitz, Glam and Gowns!

Hey It’s BigHouse!

Last week we had our annual Glitz, Glam and Gowns event and it was a HUGE success! Glitz, Glam and Gowns is our annual prom dress event for teenage girls in foster care throughout the state of Alabama. It is always such a fun way to connect with these girls and help them feel pampered for an evening.

This year the event was held at The Church at Brook Hills in Birmingham. There were close to 60 round ladies signed up and multiple volunteers there to help! The girls could shop and try on prom dresses, pick out shoes and jewelry to match, and get their makeup and nails done. It was so much fun! We heard squeals, saw huge smiles as girls wore their dresses around for the rest of the night and spinning in them in the halls. It was so encouraging to see the joy on their faces as they found the dress they wanted! 

Like many other events, Glitz, Glam and Gowns would not have been possible without some amazing people. To our staff, the volunteers, donors and prayer warriors.. THANK YOU!! Without you this event would not have been a success.

Glitz, Glam and Gowns is one of our favorite events each year, and we are so pleased with the way it went this year. We can't wait for next year!! 

BigHouse Fundraising Dinner

Hey it’s BigHouse!

We’ve got some exciting news to share with everyone! Last week, on February 23rd we hosted the annual BigHouse Fundraising Banquet and it was a huge success! Every year, this banquet is so much fun and a great way for people in the community to learn more about BigHouse and how they can impact the foster community in positive ways.

This year was no exception! The speaker for the banquet was United States Air Force Airman and author Richard Oden. Richard shared his life story about how he was raised in foster care, how that impacted his life, and why he and his wife, Brittany, have chosen to be foster parents as well. Richard’s testimony was nothing short of powerful and we were so thankful to have him be a part of our event!

BigHouse’s goal this year was to have fifty new or increased monthly donors. We are so thankful to say that we had forty-eight new monthly donors and nine current donors increase their current giving. WHAT A BLESSING!! This year’s banquet was extremely successful and so much fun! BigHouse is so thankful for all the people who had a hand in making the banquet happen! It wouldn’t have been as successful without these servant hearted people.

This banquet is always a huge way for BigHouse to gain more support in many ways. We are so thankful for everyone who attended this year’s banquet and can’t wait to see how the Lord continues to bless it!

Meet Our Interns

Hey, it’s BigHouse!

Something you may not know is that each semester we have new interns from Auburn University come and work with us. Typically, these interns are seniors at Auburn majoring in Human Development and Family Studies. We are so thankful each semester for these hardworking, devoted students! In our last blog, we gave a brief introduction of our interns, but since they are going to be familiar faces around BigHouse we wanted to give them the chance to tell everyone more about themselves.

First up we have Emily McCarron! Emily is senior at Auburn University majoring in Human Development and Family Studies with a concentration in Middle Childhood and Adolescence. She is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Emily first heard about BigHouse through a previous intern, and learned more about their mission from Micah when she came and spoke in several of her classes. Emily was immediately intrigued by Micah’s excitement for BigHouse foundation and loved what BigHouse stands for.

Emily has had an interest in pursuing some type of work with children in foster care and their families, so she felt that this would be a great opportunity to learn more about this spectrum of work. She has already learned so much about the foster care system and about all that BigHouse does and how positively that impacts Lee County and beyond. Emily is very excited to be able to help and serve the community, but also to learn how to be a better person to those around her. Through her internship, Emily is hoping to gain a clearer idea of what it is she wants to do after she graduates in May and apply all the skills and knowledge she will have learned from BigHouse over the course of the semester!

Our next intern is Hannah Gipson! Hannah is from Prattville, Alabama and is a senior majoring in Human Development and Family Studies with a minor in Social Work. Some of her favorite things are Jesus, coffee, good friends, and all things Auburn. Hannah wanted to intern at BigHouse because she completed her practicum here last semester and absolutely fell in love with everything about it. It solidified her call to serve foster and adoptive communities through her career, and she cannot wait to see what this semester holds.

Hannah first heard about BigHouse through a sorority sister who was running for Miss Auburn and promoted BigHouse for her platform. After that, Micah came and shared more about BigHouse to some of her HDFS classes at Auburn. She knew then it was something she wanted to be involved with. Hannah has learned so much about the needs of foster and adoptive families and ways to help to meet them. She has also experienced the goodness of The Lord in ways that she had not before she began working in this field. Hannah hopes to learn more in depth about what it takes to run a non-profit, and more about foster care in general. Day to day, Hannah hopes that to be able to show the love of Jesus to each person that walks into BigHouse, and work toward making BigHouse the best it can be. By the end of the semester, she hopes to learn more about non-profits and foster care.

We are so thankful to have these two young ladies with us this semester and can’t wait to see how well they are going to serve!

 

We're Back

Hey, it’s BigHouse!

 

Hi everyone! We hope you all have had a wonderful holiday season with your families and are excited for the new year. BigHouse is back and ready to start this new year off right! With the coming of this new year came some exciting changes that we would like to tell everyone about.

 

First off, we have a new staff member on our team! Tatum Meadows has recently joined our staff as the new Assistant Director. Tatum is an Opelika native and is looking forward to being back in her hometown. Tatum attended Troy University and graduated with a degree in Human Services. She developed her love for non-profit ministries during her time at Troy, and was thrilled to join the BigHouse team!

 

Our interns for this semester are Hannah Gipson and Emily McCarron. Emily is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Hannah is from Prattville, Alabama. Both are seniors at Auburn University and are excited to be working with BigHouse this semester. We are excited to have them with BigHouse for this spring semester and see how well they serve!

 

This semester comes with lots of fun and exciting events to be on the lookout for! The annual BigHouse banquet is February 23rd and is a great opportunity to learn more about what we do and how get involved. Glitz, Glam, and Gowns will be on March 10th in Birmingham and is our formal dress shopping event open to high school girls in foster care. Our monthly Kid’s Night Out and Mom’s Meet Up nights are back in full swing so keep an eye on our newsletter and website for those dates! Lastly, the annual Swimsuit and Towel Drive is right around the corner and more information will be coming soon on details and deadlines for it!

 

BigHouse is excited for this new year! We are hopeful that it will be a year full of serving new and existing families, successful events to help support our families, a growth in community knowledge and support for BigHouse, and a lot of FUN! For more information on BigHouse, our upcoming events, and ways to get involved you can check out our website, www.ourbighouse.org, and our Facebook page. BigHouse is beyond thankful for the ways the Lord blessed us in 2016 and is

excited to see how He continues to bless us in 2017!