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Singapore – Sentosa Island

WSB Admin 01/09/2017 0

Enjoy a complimentary night at Capella Singapore and free tickets for Universal Studios on fun-filled Sentosa Island

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Sentosa is Asia’s leading leisure destination and Singapore’s premier island resort getaway, located just a 10-minute drive from the central business and shopping districts. Members of the Womens Skills Bureau can benefit from a third night free when staying in the luxurious one and two-bedroomed private pool garden villas at Capella Singapore, between now and 23 December 2017.

One of the best hotel experiences begins as you approach Capella Singapore along a private drive way, leading up to the original colonial buildings, dating back to the 1880’s. A former home to the British Officers of the Royal Artillery, today, the buildings house the hotel’s public areas, including an award-winning restaurant and the Capella Library, a wonderful place for guests to relax, meet with their personal assistant, and enjoy complimentary tropical juices, soft drinks, teas and coffees throughout the day.

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The Villas at Capella Singapore are available in 133sqm one-bedroom and 186sqm two-bedroom units. Each of these villas feature a private plunge pool and a separate living space. Other popular amenities include: outdoor and indoor rain showers, BOSE sound system and complimentary in-room non-alcoholic refreshments.

All the attractions of Sentosa Island are a stones-throw from Capella Singapore. A complimentary shuttle service takes guests to some great shopping venues, as well as Singapore’s first integrated resort, Resorts World Sentosa, which operates South East Asia’s first Universal Studios theme park. Members of the Women’s Skills Bureau will also receive two complimentary Universal Studio tickets with each Villa booking.

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Whether you travel as a family, couple or with friends, Capella Singapore and Sentosa Island are the perfect combination for a relaxing, fun-filled holiday. For more information or to book, contact mark@thetravelcollection.me       www.capellahotels.com/singapore

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Volunteerism – (If that’s a social term?!?)

WSB Admin 31/08/2017 0

By Anya Mohammed

For a lot, the concept of providing someone “free service” is almost non-existent. For them, everything is related to what or how much a certain input of their time and effort will bring to them. Some of us even do jobs that we don’t enjoy only because it might pay us well or bring us some other material benefit. But… What if… along with the things we don’t really like to do, we could do things that we actually like? It may not bring us some material benefit, but isn’t personal joy and contentment a heavier payment? What if… all of us could start believing in” volunteerism?! “

I have noticed communities that focus on volunteering bring forth more hard-working and intellectual individuals. I think that’s because in life we all have tasks and responsibilities to take care of which we don’t really look forward to, but by volunteering in an area of personal interest, we can get a higher sense of self-contentment which is a very important tool towards success. We all know that what a “good deed” it is to volunteer in an old home, or by looking after cancer patients, but what if there are more options?! At volunteer WSB, there is a place for almost everyone. If you have determination and the ability to be a part of a team, then there is place for you. As a member in the volunteer team at WSB, I came to do things which I would never have time for in daily life, like writing, meeting new people and trust me some of them have become very good friends. I feel it is one of the things I enjoy doing and because of the self-contentment I get from that, I am able to perform better at tasks which are not my favorite. Research shows that those who perform pro bono activities also feel more loved and needed than those who do not because volunteering helps build compassion, fortify social relationships and feeds a sense of belonging. What a wonderful finding!

We grow by being a helping hand, by giving a chance for others to grow. We learn better by helping others learn. We become happier by enabling others to get a grasp on their happiness. We become better people, wiser individuals and more human. At volunteer WSB we can help you with all that if you can give us your unconditional help. As Gordon Hinckle said “One of the great ironies of life is this: He or she who serves almost always benefits more than he or she who is served.” As a volunteer, I could not agree more!

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Lord of the Wings – Restaurant Review

WSB Admin 31/08/2017 0

Restaurant Review

Lord of the Wings

By A. Leyla wa Leyla

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Picture Courtesy of The Pink Tarha

“The last thing I expected from a restaurant selling buffalo wings and rings was to find the best salad in Riyadh.  But as I rather enjoy having my paradigms challenged, I also found it pleasing that the salad included the usually less-than-appetizing kale. Who would have thought that baby kale could be so good?! Perhaps the honey-glazed walnut dressing helped. Pretty awesome combination.

My diet is generally very healthy, including lots of fresh, whole foods, so I really didn’t expect to find much on the menu to my liking. Poof! There went another assumption. Not only were there many great, crisp salad options, but the dressings and sauces come separately, which enables you to stay on the lighter side if you prefer.

As for the wings – there’s a great choice – in quantity and flavor, offering the same sauce options – served tossed on the wings or on the side.  Other signature mains include meaty ribs, juicy steaks and burrito bowls.

At first sight, I wondered if the warehouse interior might be a less than relaxing environment, but the playground colourfulness and genuine cheeriness of the staff are a fun, inspired combination.

Having arrived with a particularly grumpy dining companion that day, it is notable that I left Lord of the Wings with my spirits lifted by great food, helpful staff, lots of healthy, tasty options, and perfect…yes, I said perfect… onion rings.

Lord of the Wings

Exit 5 Riyadh. Tel: 0112168361

Lordofthewings.com

Instagram: lotwsaudi

 

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The Miracle Morning – Book Review

WSB Admin 31/08/2017 0

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Review by Maria Cometti

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Are you living up to your potential? Are you living the life of your dreams, or at least on your way there?

Many of us tend to settle for mediocrity in our lives. We know we want to be fitter, healthier, and have more energy. We aspire to volunteer, start a new career or business, or make an impact. So what is stopping us from living up to our potential?

 

According to Hal Elrod in his best selling personal development book, “The Miracle Morning”, our morning routine sets the tone for our day and consequently our life. Elrod begins the book by identifying the factors that keep us stuck in mediocrity. He then goes on to share the practices we can implement each day to live our own miracle mornings.

According to the Social Security Administration in the US, if you take a sample of 100 people at the start of their working careers and follow them for the next 40 years until retirement, here is what you will find:

  • only 1 person will be wealthy
  • 4 will be financially secure
  • 5 will continue working because they have to
  • 36 will be dead
  • 54 will be broke and dependent on family, friends, or the government to take care of them.

These statistics are staggering. What can we do now to ensure we don’t end up struggling like the 95% majority will?

Elrod identifies the causes of mediocrity as the following:

Rearview Mirror Syndrome– we are continuously reliving and recreating our past. We believe who we were is who we are, which limits us to reaching our true potential. Elrod reminds us that where we are is a result of who we were, but where we go depends on who we chose to be from this moment on.

Lack of Purpose– most people just focus on getting through the day, taking the path of least resistance, pursuing short term pleasures, and avoiding the discomfort that would allow them to grow. We must come up with a life purpose that inspires us to wake up everyday and live in alignment with that purpose.

Isolating Incidents: we mistakenly assume that each small choice we make is only effecting the moment. For example, we think if we eat the French fries, or hit the snooze button on our morning alarm, or skip the workout, it is only effecting that moment. In fact, it impacts who we are and who we are becoming.

Lack of Accountability: accountability is being responsible to someone else for an action or result. Very little is accomplished without it. This is why fitness enthusiasts always advocate having a trainer or workout buddy; someone you will be held accountable to.

Mediocre Circle of Influence We become the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with. Are the people in your life encouraging and inspiring you to be a better person?

Lack of Personal Development: The famous quote by Jim Rohn “Our level of success rarely exceeds our level of personal development, because success is something we attract by the person we become”.

Once we identify the elements in our life that hold us back, we can work make a plan for improvement. Our morning thoughts, activities, and routine set the tone for the proceeding day and consequently our life. Elrod and many other highly successful individuals promote the importance of a morning routine.

Elrod choses the acronym SAVERS for the components that make up a Miracle Morning:

S for Silence: purposeful silence, prayer, or meditation

A for Affirmations: We all have internal dialogue that runs throughout the day and programs our subconscious mind. We must program ourselves to be confident and successful in all we do by telling ourselves who we want to be. With time, you will begin to believe our affirmations and it will translate into reality.

V for Visualization: Often used by athletes and celebrities, visualization includes visualizing exactly what you want to accomplish or attain, and rehearsing how you will achieve it, over and over.

E for Exercise: Exercising even just a few minutes each day can have a profound impact on our health, energy, and confidence. As personal development advocate Robin Sharma states, “If you don’t make time for exercise, you will probably have to make time for illness”.

R for Reading: Modeling is the act of finding someone who has achieved the results you desire and following their steps to achieve those results. Modeling is one of the proven methods of achieving success in any area. With the vast books and resources available via the internet, reading each day can help give us the tools and insight to achieve the results you desire.

S for Scribing: Our minds are chattering all day long, and it can be helpful to get this chatter out of our heads and onto paper. Scribing, journaling, or writing, each day can also show us our key insights and ideas that we would have otherwise forgotten.

Are you ready to have your own miracle mornings and achieve the results you want in your life? I know I am! September is a new season and the perfect time to craft your own miracle mornings. The review above is only a fraction of the insight you will find in the full book, so be sure to hop on Amazon and order the kindle version of “The Miracle Morning” by Hal Elrod.

I’d love to hear from you! Email mariacometti@yahoo.com

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Interview with Princess Noaf Bint Miteb – Moonfame Founder

WSB Admin 01/06/2017 0

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The WSB had the pleasure of interviewing MoonFame founder, her Royal Highness Princess Nouf Bint Miteb Al Saud. MoonFame project is about children discovering their talents while working on an activity with a family member from the comforts of their own home for a minimal charge. Children can choose projects ranging from arts and crafts to food and beverage.

It all stemmed from the want to spend good quality time with her kids at home to creating MoonFame project that aims for children to discover their own abilities and talents benefiting their future and increasing their family bond.

She found a niche in the market and with the help of a few employees turned it into a successful project that involves children, families, and giving back to society.

Can you tell us about MoonFame?

MoonFame is a program where a child registers with us through our website   that involves mother and child. The project is for 3 months where it is overseen by a mentor from Moon Fame. Projects could range from arts & crafts to photography or fashion, it depends on what the child chooses as his project.

After the 3 month period, a bazaar is done where the children can price, sell, and showcase their own projects. The proceeds from the tickets sold at the bazaar go to a charity (each time it goes to a different one).

MoonFamers consists of three important parts that are the children of course, the mentors, and the volunteers. Each plays a pivotal role in reaching their goals and objectives. I would also like to add that anyone can participate or become a Moon Famer and it is mostly done from home!

What are the objectives of MoonFame?

There are several objectives:

  • The first is to build a strong bond with the family.
  • Second is to teach the children how to manage their own time while doing the project.
  • Third is to teach them how to be entrepreneurs.
  • Fourth is to teach them educational skills outside the school that involved doing their own research.
  • Fifth is to teach them social responsibility by helping out charities.

How did you arrive at the decision to set it up?

As a mother I wanted to find a shared activity between me and my children at home so I came up with that idea and it expanded from there.

Share with us your business plans goals for the future?

We are working on three different projects; after school activities, Initiatives, and kidtopia that fall under the Moon Fame umbrella in collaboration with schools and specialized centers around Riyadh.

Our ultimate goal is to provide different projects for the entire society for children, mothers, and family. We want to build a strong generation independent, thoughtful, and passionate through edutainment.

For further information please check out the website www.Moonfame.com or instagram moon_fame.

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Fish in a Tree – Book Review

WSB Admin 01/06/2017 0

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Book Review by Saima Bukhtiar

Fish in a Tree is a story of a sixth grader, Ally, who has dyslexia. No one is aware that she has learning differences, including Ally and her family. She feels she is not smart and manages to keep her teachers in the dark about not being able to read by retrieving to unacceptable behavior. As a result, her trips to the principal’s office are frequent. Her peers pick on her and call names, which leads her to undermine herself and hate school.

While she dreads going to school, Ally is very close to her big brother and adores her mother. Her dad is in the army and away, whom she misses dearly. She often thinks of her grandfather, who taught her and her brother many things. They both fondly recall the time spent with him. Although she has a supportive family, the lack of social life at school makes her feel very lonely. When asked the difference between lonely and alone, Ally defines them as:

“Alone is a way to be. It’s being by yourself with no one else around. And it could be good or bad. And it can be a choice. But being lonely is never a choice. It’s not about who is with you or not. You can feel lonely when you’re alone, but the worst kind of lonely is when you’re in a room full of people, but you’re still alone. Or you feel like you are, anyway.”

Ally’s life changes when her teacher leaves for maternity leave and is replaced by a new teacher, Mr. Daniels. His encouragement and faith in her helps Ally build confidence and she starts believing in herself for the first time. Mr. Daniels earns Ally’s trust and helps her learn to read after school, using special techniques for dyslexic kids. This changes Ally’s attitude toward school. She actually starts looking forward to learning and even makes friends who back her up anytime Ally doubts herself or needs help.

Although this is a kids’ book, it carries lessons for all ages. It highlights that even if someone struggles in some aspects due to their disability, they can be smart in other areas. All it takes is some love and encouragement to instill a positive attitude which takes that person a long way. The act of letting them know that someone believes in them and that a bit of reassurance can assist them in embracing their limitations and focusing the energy on their strengths to achieve success.

“No matter how smart you are, success is reached with hard work.”

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WSB #Riyadhgirlboss

WSB Admin 01/06/2017 0

May 23, 2017 at Ishbilia Compound

Here is the #Riyadhgirlboss workshop recap, incased you missed it!

Thank you to our generous sponsors: Ishbilia Compound, Lord of the Wings Restaurant, and Talat Boutique Catering.

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In the beautiful auditorium at Ishbilia compound, successful entrepreneurs and trailblazing women gathered to inspire and inform ladies aspiring to self-employment. With utterly delicious and well-presented catering from Talat Boutique, it was one tasteful morning.

 

The lively workshop kicked off with with an introduction to WSB from the #1 riyadhgirlboss herself, Sally Kennedy, Founder of WSB and owner/founder of the Good Ship Lollipop.

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The riyadhgirlboss panelists shared their unique and inspiring stories. The girlboss panel included some of Riyadh’s well-known names including, Janelle Yasay and Reina Tejano, the award winning bloggers of The Pink Tarha, First Contact personalized concierge founder and WSB board member Leigh-Jane Obermayer, Award winning film producer Nancy Paton of Paton Productions, The popular DQ-based catering of Arasta’s Kitchen, founder Arasta Harshoon, Riyadh’s first female owned real estate agency, Potomac Agency’s Kelly Downing, Art educator and founder of Cyanesque, Nadine Lama, and International abaya and swimwear designer Dania Hakim of Lebanese Street Style Kaftans.

Maria Cometti, WSB Development Manager and founder of DQ Living, The Diplomatic Quarter Magazine gave an informative presentation of the key elements to self-employment including

finding your why, how to choose the right business, products and services in demand in Riyadh, testing your idea, getting started, marketing and advertising, and overcoming fear and rejection.

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The audience and girlboss panelists engaged in an interactive Q&A session, where ladies obtained tips and techniques relevant to their own ideas and ambitions. After the workshop, ladies had the opportunity to network and obtain useful contacts. Gregory Black from Arbonne lifestyle products conversed with ladies interested in representing the Arbonne health and wellness line.

Are you an aspiring girlboss? Join the conversation at https://www.facebook.com/groups/WSBgirlboss/

Thank you to everyone who made the WSB first #Riyadhgirlboss workshop a success!!

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“Our Soldiers Our Security” – Moonfame Project Review

WSB Admin 01/06/2017 0

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Moonfame project, entitled “Our Soldiers Our Security“, was inaugurated under the supervision of the founder of the project, Her Royal Highness Princess Nouf Bint Mitab bin Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud in King Fahd Cultural Center on Friday 28th April from 2 pm to 11 pm

The Moonfame project includes a variety of activities for the child and the family, with the participation of MoonFame’s children through the variety of categories offered to them Arts and Crafts, Food and beverage, Fashion, Photography, Games, Science, Media, Drama and to take advantage of all kinds of activities that allow children to spend a fun family day with their families.

The project aims to build the child to face his future and discover his abilities and talent through the work of his project, which allows the family of the child to discover the talent of their child and progress of it, moreover the project also aims to instill the concept of the importance of time in the order of the daily schedule and build the personality of the child and find the right time for his work. His project is free of any pressure, so the child has a passion for learning and creativity and leisure time to benefit and enhance the sense of social responsibility and tender sense. The child also price’s his project and sells it in the event under the supervision of the parents and the management of MoonFame in a bazaar dedicated to them. By the end, the child has acquired practical life experience and how to start with projects.

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The MoonFame project was dedicated to the activities of “Our Soldiers Our Security“, which aims to highlight the effective role played by soldiers in protecting our dear homeland, as well as the respect, loyalty and support of our brave soldiers. Where the children of Moonfame participated in the drama category, a theater performance distinguished for the role of our heroic soldiers in addition to their performance of the Saudi parade.

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The event also featured a wide range of items including clothing, perfumes and accessories, as well as a variety of food, beverage and coffee options

And desserts from local and international cuisine. It is worth mentioning that the proceeds of this event were donated to Bunyan Charity Association for Family Development.

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WSB Freedom Speech

WSB Admin 29/04/2017 2

by Sally Kennedy – WSB Founder

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As most of you know our goal is to assist expat spouses to adjust to Riyadh by providing access to professional and opportunities and development.

Find something to do and not just survive your time here ….but thrive.

When asked to speak today I tried to think of something new to say…….CNN was on announcing that March 14th is “International day of Freedom!”

FREEDOM!

I have been here a long time but when I first arrived if I heard just the refrain from “God Bless America” I used to burst into tears……..”Land of the Free…..”

How many of you upon telling friends and family you were moving to Saudi Arabia had a response of

“WHY?”……Do you think you can do it? Can you live there? Do you know the restrictions?

And we all acknowledge there are restrictions of your freedom……

*Driving……independent movement….going where ever you want whenever you want….and also bicycle, scooter and pretty much walking down the street…..thank God for Uber, Careem and our many trusty drivers here.

*Well……..I may not be able to drive but I still have my self expression and unique style…..Really? except you have to cover it with a black abbaya…….

*Well…..if I am not happy I am out of there……Really? Not without an exit/re-entry visa……better commit and make the best of the situation.

*and life…….lots of shops not open in morning, most closed from noon till 4-5pm….some only for men…..when you are finally ready to go it is prayer time……and traffic is in gridlock.

*And the biggest restriction of all – the Freedom to WORK! Be productive.

“I have been financially independent since I was 17.” “Can I sit home?” All that education and experience just gathering dust…….will I be able to re-enter the work force when I leave here?

The result of all this is ANXIETY!

Is it safe to go out? I don’t belong here! I don’t know how to behave or what to do……”

And you restrict your own freedom more than society…..

Everyone came here for a reason (it was not the weather or view) and everyone here has some sense of adventure or you would not even try life here.

BUT… getting up the nerve to open that door and walk out takes strength.

Leigh Jane Obermyer on our board sent us a picture of the old movie star Maggie Smith with the caption: “You are a woman of reasonable intellect and ability…..Stop whining and find something constructive to do!”

That is the essence of WSB.

Find something to do….

Open the door…..

Get out…..

Get involved…..

Get something done and make a difference.

Someone will say thanks and even if they don’t you will know.

And you will be surprised to wake up happy…..we all like to be productive. And you will find you belong to a wonderful, warm, welcoming community. We do have a great, supportive, diverse community here.

***Unbiased confirmation of your ability and achievement is immeasurably important. Validation of your worth.*****

People in your life (husband, children, friends…) will be either too nice or too judgmental.

We don’t need to be pandered to and we don’t need our efforts to be belittled. Strangers will present the truth.

The satisfaction of knowing you have done something worthwhile creates confidence, self esteem and a sense of self……it is YOU.

And you can do so many things……Parent/teacher groups, charity volunteering (short or long term), work from home, full time job, tutoring……..whatever fits your life at the time …….you can reinvent yourself whenever you want.

Then, you find yourself “FREE”….to connect and get on with life regardless of those “restrictions on your freedom.”

And as a last thought, think about the freedoms you gain here……

*Freedom you have from getting help – nanny, housekeeper, driver……to go to the gym, out to dinner without the kids, work uninterrupted, do all you work in the back of the car on your phone while someone else battles the traffic…..you are not the be all driver, shopper, cook, cleaner, secretary……of everything and everyone in the family…..delegate!

*Freedom to travel – we are in the middle of the world here….close to soooo much.

*Freedom to spend (or save) that extra income you get by being here.

*Freedom from obligations……no in-laws insisting you come for the holidays or the expectations of society…….do what you want for a change.

And once you open that door…….no one can stop you.

Please, look at all the jobs and volunteer positions, think of what you want to do on your own.

Think of what or who you can use in your own life……create an opportunity for someone.

Be positive, self motivated and assertive and “Stop whining and find something constructive to do!”

Happy International day of Freedom!

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Volunteering

WSB Admin 29/04/2017 0

 

by Anya Anam Mohammed

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We have all heard how volunteering helps others and that it’s a sacred duty to serve humanity, however, how many of us have considered the benefits volunteering gives us?! Yes, to help others in need is an act of humanity! Yes, to provide unconditional care to those in need is a sanctified act no matter what sect, nation or religion you come from… BUT… if we look deep enough volunteering can feed our souls and inner selves. If we think about it, all the important roles we play in life, those that actually matter, are similar to that of volunteering. Friendship, motherhood, sisterhood, daughterhood, wifehood are all roles we play for others and at the same time get the self satisfaction that the human soul thrives on. What gain do we get out of these roles? We are not at all “paid” to play these roles, rather it is from our deepest desires to be blessed with such responsibilities in life. I guess this is where what someone said really turns out to be true “Volunteers are not paid – not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless.”

Great things can never be measured, love, care, humanity, kindness are all voluntary acts. So why not spread these acts a little out of our circle of reach? Why not reach out to the ones who perhaps, need it a bit more? All of us need each other as human beings. We are created as a single system that must work together to bring about a change and make a difference, THAT is humanity. Being human to one another is what MAKES us humans. Nobody becomes less of themselves by giving a little more of their love, care and time. By volunteering, we not only connect to others, but also grow as a person. This allows us to come across different experiences from different people and that awakens the mind and body further. Nothing relieves stress more than a meaningful connection to another person. This will also help build your social skills while giving you lifelong relationships to cherish.

WSB volunteering is here to make all that difference possible for you and for others. We are a family who aims to develop strong and meaningful bonds without expecting anything material in return. We only hope to provide a better environment for everyone as well as ourselves. Just like the mind cannot operate without a body, we cannot function alone and therefore need your support as well as love. Help us make our community, society and the world a better place to thrive and grow in. Let us make our lives worthwhile and give our coming generations a reason to be proud of and a role model to follow. We are not separate individuals; we are all connected in one way or another, so let’s allow this connection to flourish by doing the things that matter and are priceless, the acts that we can never put a dollar sign on! Just remember “Volunteers don’t necessarily have the time; they just have the heart.” – Elizabeth Andrew.

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