The Dream Calendar is featured in The Temple Terrace Beacon this week. How exciting for the word to be spreading about this charity project! I am hoping that with the printing of this article, more sponsors will rise up and get involved! We need everyone’s help to make the dreams of these children come true!
I’m including the article below if you would like to read it.
|By Debbie Carson, Staff Writer
TEMPLE TERRACE — Five-year-old Allie Blain and Megan Barrett, almost 2, want a place where they and their siblings can play without having to worry about whether or not they can use the playground equipment. They imagine a place with a stable yet forgiving ground surface and several play areas that can accommodate children with and without physical limitations.
It’s their dream – and that of their families.
To help make that dream a reality, they are working with Annie Agarwal, a photographer who is putting together the Dream Calendar, which will help raise money for the All Children’s Playground planned for Temple Terrace.
Annie, who lives in Seffner but spends most of her time in the Temple Terrace area, got in touch with Allie’s mom, Renee, who told her about their vision for the playground.
“The light started coming on,” Annie said.
As the women continued to talk, the plan for a calendar fund-raiser started taking shape.
Annie will be taking photographs of a dozen children who live in Temple Terrace and its surrounding communities and feature them in the Dream Calendar.
Each of the children has a disability or disease of some sort, Annie said of the selected children, including cancer, a heart condition, Downs Syndrome, and of course Allie’s Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura and Megan’s mitochondria disease.
Both girls will be featured in the calendar.
Though Annie is dedicating her time and talent to creating the calendar, the effort isn’t free. She is trying to sell advertising within the calendar to offset the cost of printing, which equates to more than $3,000.
“I’m not sure we’re going to make it,” Annie said of getting enough sponsors.
Right now, nine or 10 businesses have expressed an interested in purchasing advertising – they need 24.
Annie said that the advertising would consist of two business card sized ads for each month. Each spot costs $135. She is also offering a premium sponsorship for $200 that gives the advertiser a coupon on the back page of the calendar.
Advertising is not limited to businesses, however. After speaking with Cheri Donohue, executive director of the Greater Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce, Annie decided that friends and families of the featured children or those in the community at large could purchase an ad, too.
They could use the ad to memorialize a child they lost or announce their support of a child.
Fairy Princess Clothing’s owner, Katrina Michael, is loaning clothes for the calendar’s girls to wear during the photo shoots. Fairy Princess Clothing is an online girls clothing boutique found at www.FairyPrincessClothing.com.
The calendars themselves will sell for $10 each – and if fund-raisers are successful in selling every last one – they’ll raise $10,000.
It’s a decent sized chunk of money they’ll need to make the playground a reality.
Renee said that a playground large enough to accommodate children up to 12 years old could cost $150,000.
The biggest cost comes from the rubber surface under all the equipment. Mulch and sand are unstable materials and make it difficult for children with wheelchairs to move from station to station.
Rubber surfacing provides that stability but is also flexible enough to not cause injury when a child takes a tumble.
To continue the fund-raising effort, Renee is working on a Buy-A-Square program that would allow people to sponsor a square foot of rubber surfacing for $20 or $25 – depending on what the final estimate is.
How to help the Dream Calendar
If you are interested in purchasing an ad or learning more about the ads in the calendar, contact Annie at email@example.com.
For more about Allie’s condition visit www.CaringBridge.org/visit/allieblain and check out www.CloudsOfHope.org, a Web site that Renee Blain created to spread the word about the non-profit organization that she created to not only help Allie but all children with similar illnesses.
For more about Megan, visit www.cnewspubs.com/communityheart and her own Web page at www.caringbridge.org/visit/megangarrett or got to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation’s Web site at www.umdf.org.
About Annie Agarwal Photography
Her parents are photographers, so she grew up with a camera in hand and an appreciation for the art. She is the wife of Rahul Agarwal, a teacher and director of ministry at USF, and the mother of soon-to-be four children, Collin, 4, Griffin, 3, Eden Grace, 1, and one on the way.
My mom, who is also a photographer, was in town for the weekend and joined me for the three sessions on Saturday. She happened to catch this picture, which from David’s expression, makes me smile every time. It’s definitely an in action shot of both of us! I thought you might enjoy seeing a little behind the scenes image!
More sessions are coming soon! Keep checking back!