When the charity pays it forward
This summer’s two Cape Cod Healthcare Summer Charity Events raised more than $600,000 to support cancer services for patients on Cape Cod.
It was the eye-catching floral arrangements that inspired another kind of giving and would bring a smile to patients across Cape Cod. All of the flowers from both events were donated to Flower Angels USA, a non-profit organization based in Yarmouth.
Flower Angels USA volunteers disassemble donated floral arrangements and recreate small bouquets in teacups for delivery to patients in more than 30 nursing homes and those in the care of Cape Cod Healthcare VNA Hospice care services on Cape Cod.
“The idea of donating the flowers to the non-profit was a spontaneous one,” said Sharon Hawkins, a member of the 2017 Summer Charity Event Planning Committee.
Each venue was beautifully decorated with a variety of flowers to enhance the environment of charitable giving. When she arrived at the first event, a Sunday Summer Social held in the late afternoon on July 9 at Highfield Hall in Falmouth, Hawkins was struck by the décor.
“The flowers were just so beautiful and so impressive,” she said.
The event hosted 200 attendees, who enjoyed a casual late summer afternoon gathering on the lawn of the historical hall, listened to music, socialized at the cocktail reception, enjoyed a seasonal dinner and answered the night’s appeal for donations to cancer services.
As the evening was coming to a close and Hawkins found out there were no definite plans for the flowers, she gathered the committee members to discuss her thought about donating the flowers.
“They thought it was a great idea,” said Hawkins.
She made a brief phone call to Suzanne Carter, founder of Flower Angels USA to seal the deal.
Carter met Hawkins at her home in Centerville late that evening with a van to bring all the arrangements back to the Flower Angels facility in South Yarmouth for refrigeration. The next morning they were all disassembled and rearranged by the volunteers for delivery.
“We were thrilled to receive those flowers,” said Carter. “We made many, many bouquets out of the donated flowers and they made so many of the nursing home patients very happy.”
When the committee met to discuss the second summer fundraising event, “There’s No Place Like Home,” at the Ridge Club in Sandwich, which took place on August 5, they decided to donate those flowers to Flower Angels, as well, according to Hawkins.
A successful evening with 260 attendees enjoying a more formal atmosphere with a cocktail reception, dinner, dancing, a live auction and night of appeal ended with an additional gift of lavish arrangements to Flower Angels.
“The flowers were made into teacup arrangements and volunteers delivered them the following Monday to nursing homes,” said Carter. “They brought a lot of joy to the patients.”
“Since July 2016, we have delivered 1400 bouquets to Cape Cod Healthcare patients at JML Care Center in Falmouth and the VNA of Cape Cod in-home hospice patients,” said Carter. “It’s a special partnership that has worked well for everybody.”
“It’s wonderful for two organizations to come together and give something that is mutually beneficial,” said Hawkins.