Atlanta (March 5, 2010) – Donors to thePossible Woman Foundation International(PWFI) will get a chance to meet the women whose lives they are helping to change at an event Monday, April 19. Orchidea: A Celebration of New Beginnings will be held at the Wimbish House (Atlanta Woman’s Club) at 1150 Peachtree St. in Atlanta. The event starts with a wine reception at 6:30 followed by dinner at 7:00.
Well-known radio personality Vikki Locke is the Honorary Chair of the event. A member of the Georgia Radio Hall of Fame, the Roswell resident has been waking up Atlanta morning radio listeners for over 20 years. In addition to her professional success, she is passionate about donating time to help others.
The event’s name – Orchidea – was chosen to reflect that the recipients, like orchids, are strong enough to adapt, survive and thrive despite life’s many setbacks. They have overcome the challenges that caused their dreams of higher education to be delayed or interrupted, and are on their way to fulfilling their vision of success.
PWFI has provided more than $150,000 in scholarships since 2001, giving women the opportunity to return to the workforce and advance professionally. One hundred percent of PWFI's operating expenses are paid by the contributions made by its board members; outside donations go directly to scholarships and minimal related expenses.
PWFI is a 501(c) 3 non-profit foundation that gives scholarships to women and is funded solely through contributions. Although both organizations were founded by Linda Wind, The Possible Woman Foundation International and Wind Enterprises, which conducts the Possible Woman Leadership Conferences, are separate entities with no financial or legal affiliation.
This part of the blog is about how incredibly wonderful all of us felt on the night of the banquet. Refer to Part 3 for pictures of the lovely place that it was held. When we first arrived, we were all full of 'oohs & aahs' at the beauty of the place. We soon realized that we would be the main attraction--it was all about us on banquet night! We were made to feel so special--even our name tags had a special ribbon on them to signify us as the award recipients.
M., K., and Me--so excited to be there!
Each person was genuinely excited to meet us, thrilled for us, and just happy to be there.
After many, many photos, we went to the dining area, where the tables were set for 10--one scholarship recipient and 9 others. I wish I would have thought to take a picture of the gorgeous meal as it was served. I am not sure what all was on my salad plate, but it was delicious! The entrée was either chicken or pork wrapped around some sort of dressing/stuffing--very tasty; fresh asparagus spears, and roasted potatoes, with peppers. Dessert was a glass of raspberries, blueberries and strawberries with a hint of glaze drizzled on top. Yummy!
As we were eating, they called us up one at a time to tell our 'story'. I was called first. I stood on the stage while D.B. read her prepared remarks about me being a cancer survivor, a mom, a volunteer, etc., and the academic goals I have set. When she handed me my certificate and hugged me, she asked if I wanted to say something. The first thing I told the audience was, "They did not tell us we were going to speak." That drew some laughter. I thanked them, of course, and told them that they have changed my life with this scholarship. I was happy to tell them that I will be graduating with my Bachelor's next May, a whole year before my son graduates from high school. I don't think I said anything else, but I remember them applauding me as I walked back to my seat. Each of the other winners were called up one at a time, and we heard their stories as well. I had not read their bios ahead of time (they were printed out for us to see at the table), so as I listened to each one, I was thinking, "Wow! I am not even worthy of this!" All of us have overcome adversity in our lives, and all of us have goals to better ourselves with education. We also plan a career that will help others in some way. Advocates, nurses, teachers, counselors--each of us wants to give back in some way.
At the end, we heard many more congratulations, received many more hugs, and continued to feel overwhelmingly blessed. Then our drivers arrived to return us to the hotel. (It still cracks me up that we had drivers!) No one really wanted to say good night, although our feet hurt, and those that had flown in were really tired. Two ladies were to fly out early in the morning to return home, while the rest of us were staying for the women's conference.
I was 'appreciating' the art at the hotel.
This is the inside of the hotel, where you can look straight up the middle and see every floor; it was quite a sight.
I was ready for bed after talking to my guys at home. We went to our room and crashed as soon as we could. It was a long day for me, and that hotel bed and fluffy pillows felt really, really good!