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Life can be tough, and no one knows this more than an underprivileged family. With the parents working long hours to bring in enough money to keep food on the table and clothes on the kids, the idea of having fun and splurging on extra activities is usually never considered. At Kenzi’s Kidz, we realize the benefits of fun, family activities. They bring joy and laughter into children’s and family’s lives and that is worth more money than we could ever give away. Through partnering with MOTH Contemporary Circus Center, we were able to provide three of our Kenzi’s Kidz families with an amazing, fun experience.

Kenzi's Kidz at MOTH Contemporary Circus Center img_20161001_125012398 img_20161001_125324504

MOTH Contemporary Circus Center is the premier circus and aerial training facility in Denver, designed specifically for professionally-minded circus artists. Through their Community Outreach program, they give underprivileged youth the opportunity to train, perform, and create with the MOTH coaches. Not only does this program give kids an incredible athletic experience, but it also helps them develop life skills such as confidence, team building, trust, and life-long friendships.

 

 

On October 1st, our seven kids and three adults were trained by MOTH Circus  coaches Deena and Stephen. They learned juggling, tightrope walking, fabric climbing, and jumping on the trampoline. The favorite event of the day: the trampoline by far! The MOTH Circus coaches were incredibly positive with the kids and really encouraged them to try out all the different activities. Not only was it fun to watch the kids have fun learning these acrobatic skills, but seeing them develop their confidence as they tried new things was purely rewarding.

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I thank MOTH Contemporary Circus Center for the opportunity they provided to our three Kenzi’s Kidz families. This will definitely be an experience they will never forget. I’d also like to encourage you to learn more about MOTH Contemporary Circus Center. They provide an invaluable service to underprivileged kids and are still trying to meet their fundraising goal for 2016. Any support you can provide them would help them reach more kids throughout the Denver area and continue to allow them to offer this invaluable program.

 

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James A. Baldwin stated that, “Anyone who has ever struggled with poverty knows how extremely expensive it is to be poor.”  Not only are families struggling financially at a disadvantage because they can’t qualify for discounts or buy in bulk, but their children can suffer emotionally because they don’t have the resources needed to be successful in school and to keep up with their peers.  The mission of Kenzi’s Kidz is to support underprivileged children and their families in Colorado by providing toys, food, and more during the holidays, school supplies and clothing during the school year, and assisting families through community outreach, financial planning, and professional support.

Kenzi’s Kidz relies on sponsors to contribute to the needs of our participating families.  In 2010, we started with one family and continued to add another family each year until 2015 when we were able to sponsor six families!  For the upcoming 2016/2017 school year our goal is to again sponsor six families.

In order to do this , we need sponsors!

If you are in a place to give and desire to build up the community around you, we would be happy to have you sponsor one of our families.

Fund a Family $2,500

By becoming a Kenzi’s Kidz Fund a Family Sponsor, you ensure that one family in our program has the financial assistance they need for one full year. Your gift presents this family with peace of mind and the ability to re-focus on their future, and offers them the security they need to believe in that future. In addition, you will get updates on the impact your gift is having on the family.

Our sponsors get to select the family they support from our accepted applicants and many of our donors build a relationship with the family they’ve chosen to sponsor (though sponsorship can be anonymous). Sponsors get updates any time we spend money on the family and they receive photos and written experiences from the family.  It may not seem like enough, but it is only $2500 to sponsor a family for one year.  This payment can be broken up into monthly, quarterly, or bi-annual payments. Contact us if you would like to break up the payments.

 

With these funds, Kenzi’s Kidz supplies the children in these families the fundamental items needed to succeed in school, such as school supplies and fees, clothing, and extracurricular activities.  Other items we provide them with include winter jackets, hats, gloves, boots, Halloween costumes, birthday parties and gifts, holiday gifts, desks, beds and bedding, towels, and supplemental food for one year.  We also help with various other needs to ensure the family’s life continues on a path towards stability.  For example, last year we assisted a family with their car repairs so the parents could get to work to continue to provide for their children.

 

Wonder if this assistance really helps?  Marcellina’s family was one of our sponsored families in 2011 and she says, “Our quality of life has certainly improved in a huge way.  My children and I have choices in the activities that have been offered to us for the summer.  We are able to attend the zoo and water parks with guests.  Not to mention the clothes that were provided for us.  This added to the needed summer wardrobe.  As a single mom being able to take my kids to places as a family, and have fun, makes us all feel good.  This opportunity gave my children the added confidence that we are a normal family.”

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14079557_1067060453369679_7966113507748325448_nLast Saturday, August 20th, Dolls for Daughters had the pleasure of participating in the Kids Choice 5th Annual Health and Wellness Fair.  This incredible event is hosted by Kids Choice Dental and its aim is to give back to the community by serving free food and desserts, giving away raffle prizes, playing music from a guest DJ, and providing an opportunity for local youth dance groups to perform.  With over 1500 people attending this event, it’s an amazing opportunity for companies who provide services to lower income families to educate, enlighten, and engage attendees and participants about the options available to them.

Kids Choice Dental provided free dental, vision, and ortho screenings for families at the fair.  They also offered a cleaning with X-rays for only $49.  Quality dental care can be difficult to obtain for some families and this event makes these necessary services available for anyone who attends!

Other highlights from the fair include 70 bicycles that were given away as well as a bicycle repair area for attendees to bring their own bikes to be serviced.  Other companies such as UPS, were looking for employees and providing new job opportunities.

Dolls for Daughters has been lucky enough to be invited to this event for the past three years and we look forward to continued participation!  Our goal at this event is to inform and educate the community about our Annual Toy Shop (held in December) which provides assistance to 6,000 children ages birth to 18 by gifting each child with a new toy, a Lego set, a stocking, a new stocking stuffer, a new book/bookmark and a new toothbrush and toothpaste kit.  We have also partnered with Walgreens for the past two years to offer free flu shots to those who attend our Toy Shop.

Our participation at the fair also serves to enlighten the community, and other companies, about the various ways Dolls for Daughters and Kenzi’s Kidz offers assistance and support for those in need.

Thanks to our Packz for Kidz program, we were able to give out 16 backpacks filled with school supplies to some of the kids who attended the Health and Wellness Fair this year.  (The other 286 backpacks were given out at our official Packz for Kidz event earlier this month.)

We love opportunities to connect with and educate those in our community who could benefit from the services and programs Dolls for Daughters offers.  We thank board member, Alex Benko for his time spent running the DfD table at the Health and Wellness Fair this year and helping us make those connections and relationships that will ensure our success in the community.

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As much as I enjoy helping kids in the community, it gives me great pleasure to get others involved in the work as well!  When a local company decides to jump in and host an event that benefits Dolls for Daughters, not only do I feel gratitude for the partnership, but I am proud that they are choosing to donate their time, money, or resources to help the community and kids around them.  Kendra Scott Jewelry in North Cherry Creek is one such business who has partnered with us to make a difference.

Last Thursday, August 11th, Kendra Scott hosted an event at her shop to raise funds for our Packz 4 Kidz program where we serve kids in our community by giving them new backpacks and supplies to get them set up for success.  25 supporters attended the event and through their purchases of Kendra Scott jewelry, helped us raise almost $600!  One of the highlights of the evening was the signature Dolls for Daughters necklace that Kendra Scott designed specifically for us and the event!  (And yes, you can still purchase the signature piece!)

Dolls For Daughters Signature Piece

Some of the attendees were not familiar with Kendra Scott and were pleased to find the jewelry reasonably priced and perfectly fashionable!  Something to note, Kendra Scott will give you 50% off all purchases during your birthday month!  If that’s not a great birthday present, I don’t know what is.  If you do decide to stop in and shop, please let them know you heard of them through Dolls for Daughters!

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We are definitely looking forward to another partnership later in the year with Kendra Scott and we hope to see you there!

 

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Here at Dolls for Daughters, we work continuously to help the children in our communities and programs get the tools, supplies, and support they need to be successful, especially in their schooling.  One way we do this is through our Packz 4 Kidz program which we held on Sunday, August 14th and I’m happy to report that the event was a huge success!

This was our First Official Pack 4 Kidz event and with the 128 backpacks that were donated to us, plus our own 156 backpacks, we were able to serve 286 children in one day!  Each child received a fun backpack filled with school supplies that will help alleviate some of the financial stress families can feel surrounding going back to school.

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In addition to the backpacks, we were able to give away 47 water bottles, 250 toothbrushes and toothpaste kits from Delta Dental, 262 of our 2015 Dolls for Daughters book, and 69 lunch boxes.

Helping out and giving their time to ensure a smooth event, were 20 volunteers (the youngest being only seven!) who organized all of the supplies and backpacks, and made sure every child who came to the event was able to get their goodies!  Seeing the smiles on the faces of the children who got to pick out their own backpacks and the “thank you’s” from the parents made all of the hard work worth every second!  Everyone was so kind and happy and their gratitude reminds us why we do the work we do.

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Our success is attributed to the help and generosity we received from businesses in our community.  In particular, this Packz 4 Kidz event was made possible by Precision Homes who sponsored and hosted it.  We also want to give a huge Thank You to the following companies for their generous donations of backpacks, supplies, water bottles, and lunch boxes: Bachus and Schanker, Porch Light Real Estate, Orangetheory Fitness Lowry, Wystone’s World Teas, and Gnat Jewelers.

This one event is proof that when we come together and share our resources, we can really make a difference in the lives of those in our community.

 

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Even though we are in the heat of summer, it’s time to start thinking about heading Back-to-School!

For many of us, going back-to-school shopping is exciting! We love going to the store with our kids as they pick out their new crayons, pencils, notebooks, and backpacks. But for some families who are barely getting by, the added financial stress of back-to-school shopping can be overwhelming and the shopping nonexistent. To ensure the kids who are a part of our Kenzi’s Kidz program (current or alumni) have the necessary tools they need to succeed in school, we have created our Packz 4 Kidz program! Through generous donations from our sponsors and people in the community, we fill as many backpacks as we can with a variety of necessary school supplies to prepare the kids in our program and for heading back-to-school. This is also the first year we are opening this program up to other families in need outside of the Kenzi’s Kidz program.

This year, we are raising funds for our Packz 4 Kidz program by partnering with Kendra Scott Jewelry in Cherry Creek. Kendra Scott will be hosting a free Back-To-School Celebration on Thursday, August 11th from 6 – 8 PM. The Celebration will include sips, sweets, and jewels! 20% of the proceeds from the evening’s sales will benefit Dolls for Daughters. In addition to the beautiful jewelry already on display in the store, Kendra Scott has designed a signature DfD necklace that will be available for purchase!

Dolls For Daughters Signature Piece

Want to help out, but can’t make the event? Don’t fret! You can call in your order on August 11th (anytime), pay over the phone, and Kendra Scott will ship your items to you for free! 20% of your phone order will also benefit DfD, just be sure to mention Dolls for Daughters when you’re placing your order.

KENDRA SCOTT CHERRY CREEK NORTH
175 Fillmore Street, Denver, Colorado 80206
720-381-2999
KENDRASCOTT.COM

We are very excited to be partnering with Kendra Scott for this event. Her company, over the past 12 months, has donated one million dollars and 50,000 pieces of jewelry to various charities and organizations nationwide! We are honored to receive her assistance and generosity for this Back-To-School Celebration and we would be honored to have YOU in attendance!

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Raising funds for a non-profit organization is constant and continual.  We could not do what we do without the help and assistance of our generous sponsors.  With their partnerships, we are able to throw galas and host events where we can raise awareness and funds to help the kids and families of Denver.

Today we highlight our sponsor ABdenver.

If you’ve never heard of ABdenver, it is definitely worth your time to check out their website, www.abdenver.com, to see the beautiful digital artwork they’ve created.  They are a Denver and Minneapolis based online advertising agency with a focus on creating brand advocates, “artfully.”  The gorgeous imagery and the smart layouts shown all over their website attest to this artful side!  Some of ABdenver’s “gold stars” include holding the all-time fundraising record for United Way in Minneapolis as well as the attendance record at the National Western Centennial.  We love working with people who have shown such dedication to their causes and interests!

ABdenver first heard about Dolls for Daughters at our annual benefit a few years back.  They “felt the speakers had tremendous poise and spoke from the heard.  We sit through a lot of benefits and this one made me feel something.”  ABdenver says, “To quote the Little Prince, ‘It is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye.’  Dolls for Daughters helps the heart to smile.  If that’s not an artful organizational quality, we don’t know what is.  We’re tickled, therefore, to be advocates.”

ABdenver has worked with many organizations such as libraries, special needs, United Way, and many other non-profits, helping them raise funds and awareness.  Dolls for Daughters is the first organization they’ve worked with that is so focused on helping kids…”and joy.”  This year at our Annual Gala, ABdenver donated some “microchip cookies” for our schwag bags!  They had a table at our Auction and they commented:

“At the dinner three things stood out.

  1. The amount of the ask was appropriate.
  2. The live auction was not annoying, kinda folksy and even funny.
  3. It was timed just right and again, the main talk was very moving.

We will definitely do it again.”

And we’ll be honored to have them back!

We understand that there are many organizations which our sponsors could be a part of, ABdenver works with us because we align with their values.  In their own words, “The best partnerships are those that focus on helping the non-profit “get the word out” in what we might call an “invasive” fashion. You need a message that invades the public conscience and becomes hard to forget.  Some businesses support a charity to get their own name out there. Nothing wrong with that. It’s more fun to get the charity out there–in unorthodox ways. It can translate to real star power.”

It is truly an honor to have such amazing, like-minded businesses championing for us and our cause.  Sharing the vision of helping the kids and families in Denver allows our work together to be uplifting and prosperous for all involved.

We’d like to give another huge THANK YOU to ABdenver for being such amazing and generous sponsors.  We look forward to working with you more!

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Dolled Up For A Cause

13417019_1754265661523747_6107973716158196681_oOn Saturday evening, June 4th, we got Dolled Up For A Cause!  The idea of this event was for attendees to get “dolled up” and enjoy an evening of fashion and beauty while contributing to the doll drive we set up to benefit the kids of Dolls for Daughters.

The event was held at the chic Glamour Bar Denver and was hosted by local fashion designer, Salwa Owen.  Salwa believes in “empowering women through the joy of fashion” and this event did exactly that!  Guests at the event enjoyed complimentary style consultations, the latest fashion trends, beauty treatments from Glamour Bar, and exclusive trunk show access in addition to yummy appetizers and mimosas by Difranco’s.

There was also a photobooth from www.artofher.com where it looked like we were a doll in a “Barbie-like” package, behind a sheet of clear plastic.  The photos turned out amazing and it was so fun to get a picture done as a doll!

Overall, the event was extremely successful!  Guests learned about fashion and left with new, trendy fashion and beauty items.  We also had 49 new dolls donated which I know the children of Dolls for Daughters will absolutely love!

It’s an amazing experience to come together with like-minded people, working together to empower women, make them look and feel beautiful, and to help a good cause like Dolls for Daughters.  A huge thank you to everyone who came out and supported Dolled Up For A Cause.  And if you missed it this time around, be sure to keep an eye out for the next event!

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The Power of a Few

Life can be tough for any of us, but it can be especially difficult when you’re a single mother, trying to make ends meet, and are hit with challenges that have the potential to completely derail you.  That’s where Kenzi’s Kidz comes in, to help solve the problem and mitigate what could have been a disastrous situation.

On Friday, June 3rd, we were able to do just this!

A mom in our program needed to get her car repaired.  Without this transportation, she couldn’t get to and from work and school and couldn’t transport her three children.  The problem was the repair cost $1,194.  The mom used the remaining funds in her Kenzi’s Kidz account, but it wasn’t enough to cover the cost.  Fortunately, we had an amazing donor step up and cover the difference!  Not to mention, he worked with a local auto company to get a deal on labor and parts for us.  Without this generous donor’s time and financial assistance, this mom would not have been able to get the repairs she needed.

It’s times like this, when we are able to turn a possible disastrous problem into a small passing issue, that I see the amazing impact we have in the families lives that we serve.  Kenzi’s Kidz gives a helping hand to these families who are working hard to support and care for their children.  Sometimes all it takes is one caring, able person to be a donor that makes a huge difference in the life of a struggling family.

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As June 9th quickly approaches, myself and everyone over here at Dolls for Daughters, are getting extremely excited for our next event, our Bidz for Kidz Annual Dinner and Auction.  This event is held at the Willshire Golf Course in Denver and features a live and silent auction, sit down dinner, cash bar, putting contest, and award ceremony.  Last year’s event drew in 100 people and was very successful!  

We are looking forward to another entertaining and fund-raising event this year with even more guests in attendance!

Here’s what the night will look like: guests will enter the event hall around 6:00 pm and will enjoy a fabulously crafted cocktail from the cash bar.  While sipping their beverage, they will mosey on over to the Silent Auction table to write in their bids for a wide variety of donated items. Once they feel good about their bid, guests will head over to the putting contest.  Participation costs $10 and the winner receives half the pot! Dinner arrives next and guests enjoy a delicious dinner of beef, chicken, or veggie and enjoy a complimentary glass of wine.  They’ll chat with the other guests at their table, catching up with old friends, and making the acquaintance of new ones. MC Kyle Dyer will give awards to our supporters, including businesses that collected the most toys in 2015 for our Dolls for Daughters and Toys for Boys programs.  

A live auction will then proceed, with items such as tennis racquets and balls, golf games, an Audi jacket and Audi swag, museum tickets, an autographed Nolan Arenado bat, and other fun items up for bid!  

Auction Items

Everyone has a phenomenal time at our Bidz for Kidz Annual Dinner and Auction and we raise much needed funds for the organization.

Since everyone inquires about the funds raised, and because we are so honored to receive such amazing donations, allow me to share these numbers with you.  Last year’s Bidz for Kidz Annual Dinner and Auction’s live auction raised $34,000 and the silent auction brought in an additional $3,000!  This money allowed us to run our programs for the following fiscal year and to assist in serving our sponsored families.  We were able to distribute 88 new backpacks filled with school supplies for families in need last August.  These funds also allowed us to have our most successful toy shop ever!  We were able to publish 3,500 copies of our book and provided 3,500 children with stocking stuffers over the Holiday season.  We were able to provide new toys for the 4,442 children we serve and an additional 1,261 children throughout Colorado through our Dolls for Daughters and Toys for Boys programs which are run through our toy shop.  And the greatest benefit of these funds, we were able to fund six families instead of four through our Kenzi’s Kidz program.  We know all the kids and families appreciate this assistance, and I am thrilled that we were able to serve so many children and families in the Denver area!  Your contributions and donations are put to great use and are deeply appreciate by all involved in our programs.

We would not be able to put on this annual event if it wasn’t for the generous contributions of time and funds by our sponsors.  We are lucky enough to have KB Digital Designs, Reign Magazine, Telemundo Denver, and ABDenver sponsoring our event this year.  KB Digital has actually been supporting us for five years and is our program photographer.  They donate their time and services to ensure we can continue with our mission.  

If this event sounds like fun to you, tickets are still available and can be purchased HERE.  

I just want to thank everyone in advance who will attend and support this event!  It is great to be able to spend an evening mingling with you, getting to know you, and to be the beneficiary of your generous donations.  I could not do what I do without your generosity!  From the bottom of my heart, and from all the kids and families support by Kenzi’s Kidz and our programs, THANK YOU!

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