jenniferHappy Spring! There certainly is no shortage of activities going on at The Friendship Club right now! It is a time when we are both preparing for the beginning and the end of a Friendship Club girl’s journey. While we have begun our spring recruitment process for new sixth grade girls to join in the summer, we are also preparing to say goodbye to our senior girls. On May 7th we will honor eight amazing young women for their perseverance, accomplishments, and for setting positive goals for their future. This year’s Graduation and Scholarship Dinner will be even more special because we will also officially celebrate our 20th Anniversary and the evolution of the program and organization since 1995. We have many fun surprises in store for the event and we hope that you will consider joining us. Invitations should have hit your mailbox this weekend – please take a moment to consider attending, hosting or filling a table with friends and neighbors, or making a donation in your absence to support this important culminating celebration and help us continue our important work. If you did not receive an invitation, but would like to, please give us a call at 265-4311.

Attendees of the Graduation and Scholarship dinner always walk away from this event feeling inspired and full of love. Our girls are not only honored by all of us, they honor others by sharing their story, their plans, and their thanks for The Friendship Club. It makes every donor and volunteer understand the vital role they play in keeping The Friendship Club strong for our girls. We are excited to also have the opportunity to honor our history and our evolution through the years during the cocktail hour – it will be fun for new and old friends alike. You may be walking through memory lane with us or you may be learning things you never knew! We guarantee it will be fun for all!

We are also excited to welcome back 2001 graduate, Jo Beaudreaux, to learn more about what she has been up to since she left The Friendship Club!

May 7th will be a special evening honoring the past, the present, and the future of The Friendship Club. Thank you for the role you have played in making sure The Friendship Club is strong and relevant for girls at risk in our community. Looking forward to seeing you!

In friendship

Jennifer

Join Us for the 4th Annual Spaghetti Dinner

On Saturday, April 25th from 5:00-8:00 p.m., our Leadership Council girls will put on their Spaghetti Dinner & Raffle event at the Grass Valley Veteran’s Hall to help raise funds for our programs. This will be the fourth year that the girls have planned, organized and implemented all aspects of the event to support The Friendship Club.  If you are unable to join us, you can still support us by getting your dinner to go!

Details are below and you can purchase tickets online through our website.

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Artist Open House to Benefit TFC

We are pleased to invite you to join us for an Artist Open House on Saturday, May 2nd, with our very own Volunteer Manager, Cindy Hintz.  In addition to being a dedicated employee at The Friendship Club, Cindy is a very talented fiber artist.  Her open house will showcase her beautiful pieces of fiber art and tapestry bags, and she will donate 20% of all sales this day to support our programs!  We hope to see you there!

Artist Open House Email Invite 5.2.15[1]

A Message from Our Executive Director

jenniferWow our 20th anniversary year is off with a BANG!  I hope you all had a chance to read our 20 Days of Friendship series and two-page spread on February 14th.  If not, you can link to them here. We are so grateful to those supporters who availed themselves to share more with our community about their perspectives and their love of The Friendship Club, and I hope you have had a chance to see some of them in our community and say thank you.  I was personally inspired every day to open the paper and read about our amazing girls, volunteers, and community supporters.  What a confirmation of our important work!

The request for donations in The Union coupled with our special appeal has been helping us raise important funds for our program.  As you may have read, a generous donor has offered to match up to $20,000 in community donations!  Many of you have already given to this effort and we are so grateful.  To date we have raised nearly $15,000 toward the match!  Please consider joining this effort if you haven’t yet. Click here to see the various ways you can donate.

We thank you, our close friends and family, for your continued support and for the love and compassion you show our girls by investing in their future.

In Friendship,

Jennifer Singer

Power of the Purse is Coming!

POWofPurseThe Power of the Purse is right around the corner and will be the biggest ever!!  We have a record-breaking event and have moved to The Miners Foundry this year to accommodate more guests.  This annual event serves as an introduction for new The Friendship Club friends.  We will raffle 20 amazing purses and share a one-hour program – we certainly hope people feel inspired to volunteer and/or donate!  We have a limited number of seats left but if YOU want to join us (men welcome too!!) please call us to reserve a spot!

Many thank to our purse donors this year; Blue Moon Apparel, Abstrakt, Dokimo’s Pharmacy, The Gray Goose, Judi’s of Nevada City, JJ Jackson’s, Yuba Blue, Mountain Recreation, Uptown Salon, Ranee’s Nails, Head to Heal Spa, Pine Street Porch, Dawn Lorraine Conscious Skincare, Wendy Thibeault, Future Generations, Piper’s Alley.  If you’d like to preview the donated purses, visit our Facebook Page to see pictures of them all (and like us on FB if you haven’t already)!

And thank you to our Underwriters and Sponsors; Andrea Baron, Antonio Ayestaran, Catering by Antonio, Cello Chocolates, Commonwealth Financial Network – Terry and Karen Brown, Country Copy, Juliet Erickson, FitCulture Studio, Foothill Flowers, Laurel Vieaux, Nanci Mason, Nevada City Film Festival – Jesse Locks and David Nicholson, Nevada City Winery.

College Knowledge in Action

ucsc-aerialThe upper high school group has been busy for the last few months. We took advantage of the beautiful weather and spent the Presidents Day weekend on a college trip to UC Santa Cruz and Cabrillo Community College. Both campuses are stunning, with ocean views and expansive facilities. The girls were excited with the possibility of living near the ocean and attending college. Of course, the weather could not have been better for us to enjoy the beach and the towns of Santa Cruz and Capitola. Monday morning we ended our visit with a workout along West Cliff…we ran, power walked, and stopped for pushups and lunges. Whew! On our way back, we stopped to watch the surfers and to enjoy the beautiful sunshine and the fresh air.

Cooking Dinner Together

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The girls and their families enjoying the meal they cooked

As part of our efforts to expose girls to new things, teach them about nutrition and healthy eating, and to teach them valuable cooking skills, the high school girls have been cooking monthly dinners together with their Program Director, Kristin Aguilar. Last month, the girls made red and green enchiladas, salad, two kinds of salsa and rice. They each invited a family member to join them, which we do at the Club every quarter. Kristin had a few parents tell her afterward how much they enjoyed being there, meeting the other families, and eating a meal prepared by the girls. Everyone was able to bring home leftovers, and we are looking forward to doing it again this week!  This time, the girls are making Japanese food…miso soup, vegetable sushi, salad and mochi. The group tries a new type of cuisine each time they cook together, and Kristin always likes to introduce a new skill or kitchen technique. It is always fun to challenge the girls to try new flavors and taste combinations!

Teaching Public Speaking Skills

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Jerri Glover with Toastmasters

The 8th grade girls have been working with Toastmaster, Jerri Glover, to hone their presentation and public speaking skills in preparation for their 8th grade speeches (a graduation requirement at many of the schools). Jerri, who serves as the District 39 Community Outreach coordinator and has achieved the level of Advanced Communicator Bronze, has been a part of the Nevada County Toastmasters for a few years and is a long time volunteer at The Friendship Club. Toastmasters aims to help people gain confidence while speaking in front of a group and leadership skills. We are happy to report that of the girls who have given their speeches, all received an “A” or “B” on them.  It is our hope that this puts them on the path of feeling comfortable and confident giving presentations and speeches at school, with The Friendship Club and out in the community—a skill that will serve them well for years to come!

20 Years of Building Bright Futures for Girls

fc-logo.pngThe Friendship Club turns twenty years old this year and we are grateful for the support you have provided us in those twenty years.  In celebration of our anniversary we have some exciting things planned. To kick the year off, we hope that you will check out The Union today where Brian Hamilton outlines a special series that will spotlight The Friendship Club and the many people we have touched over the years.  Not only have we influenced the lives of several hundreds of girls, we have created a community of volunteers, board members, donors and staff that make up The Friendship Club family.

Fall Break 2013 043You and people like you have been the backbone of The Friendship Club for twenty years.  Many of you remember when we started the organization, you sat on our first board of directors, you donated those first dollars to help get us started, you believed in us when were just an idea, and we hope we have made you proud in the last twenty years.  In my experience and after knowing many of you for many years, I see that people and businesses that support The Friendship Club seem to have one common denominator: you believe in helping one girl at a time and you know that making an investment in young lives now will pay off tenfold in the future.

While we have some long-time friends, we have also made many new friends along the way.  Through our events, our volunteer opportunities, and our community service we have touched the lives of many people in our community who have jumped on board to support our girls. I say “many” and not “plenty” of new friends deliberately because we will continue to seek support from new and old friends alike as we contemplate quality of our programs, depth of our service, and growth of our organization. We will need more support in the coming years and that support will translate into even more success, more lives transformed, more opportunities for our community to help girls at risk realize a bright and productive future.  The need for our program has not dissipated over the years, but has in fact grown, as families struggle with difficult economic realities, drug and alcohol addiction, and mental health challenges.  The Friendship Club has refined and strengthened our program in the last few years and we are ready for the challenges that lie ahead.

2014 Grads_Group ShotOur graduates live in and out of our community, they are going to school, they own businesses and homes, they are raising families, and they are paying taxes. They are thinking about how they can Pay It Forward and give back to a community that has been generous to them.  They are happy.  They are healthy.  They are our future. They are realizing their dreams because of you.  Thank you.

Please look out for more information soon about our upcoming events, updated website and video links……its going to be a fantastic 2015!!

Giving Tuesday: A great way to show your support of our girls!

givingtuesday2014Today is Giving Tuesday, a global day of giving, and we hope that you will join with other donors TODAY to make a difference for The Friendship Club girls!

Your generous investment in The Friendship Club is paying off!  While girls in The Friendship Club face a host of challenges, with your continued support we are giving them what they need for a brighter future.

Did you know that 70% of our girls live in poverty, that 64% have alcohol or drug abuse in their family, and that 36% have a parent that has been or is currently incarcerated, and have been exposed to domestic violence?

Because of you over 90% of girls report we help them do better in school and make new friends, over 95% say we give them a safe place to be, and 90% say they understand what a healthy relationship looks like.

You help us change lives.  Often the changes we see in a girl are subtle, while the changes within her are profound.  She holds her head a little bit higher when she enters a room or she improves a grade.  She decides to go out for a sport or join a club at school. She will be the first in her family to go to college, she will raise her family in a drug free environment, and she will give back to her community.

Come 2015, The Friendship Club will have been empowering local girls for 20 years! In anticipation of this important anniversary and to give an extra boost to our next 20 years, please send a special, tax-deductible year-end gift to The Friendship Club. 

When you consider the size of your gift, please think about the real and important impact we are having on girls in Nevada County. As healthier young women, they are making better choices for themselves, influencing their friends and families, and contributing to our community in positive ways.

Click here to make your donation.  You will have the option to donate online or in other ways, and can make a one-time gift or turn your gift into a monthly donation.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at (530) 265-4311 or jennifers@friendshipclub.org.

Thank you for being a part of our family of donors, for believing in our young girls, and for sowing the seeds for our girls’ future.

In friendship,

Jennifer Singer, Executive Director

Juliet Erickson, President, Board of Directors