Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Volunteer of the Year Award - Tim Bach

The Dream Factory is so proud and thankful for all of our volunteers who continue to make us one of the top wish-granting organizations in the world. At our annual convention in Orlando last month, we gave out our Volunteer of the Year Award. With The Dream Factory relying almost exclusively on the work from volunteers, the Volunteer of the Year is one of the top honors given annually. And this year, fittingly, it went to Tim Bach from the Central Missouri Chapter.

Searching for a charity to be a part of five years ago, Tim Bach watched a promotional video about The Dream Factory. Instantly, his wife Paula remembers, he was hooked. What a treasure that short video turned into for both Tim and The Dream Factory. Five years and countless dreams later, Tim Bach is now an integral part of The Dream Factory and was this year's recipient of the Volunteer of the Year Award.

According to his wife, he was born to do this. “Tim is an organizer by DNA,” Paula says. “He is outgoing and friendly. He is caring. And he loves children. It’s pretty much a perfect fit.”

Tim is a dedicated volunteer whose commitment to making a difference in the lives of children in need has not gone unnoticed. The Dream Factory was pleased to present him with this award.

Rewind to 2007 and the eager Tim didn’t waste much time to get involved in the organization. He became the Central Missouri Chapter Vice President and later was a member on the National Board of Directors. This past year, he was elected Central Missouri’s President, became a mentor to new chapters, was appointed to the Executive Committee by Board President Janice Harris, and had a strong role in the recent Long-Range Planning Committee. He is an example of what volunteerism is all about so, not surprising, is presented with this award.

Paula says: “Tim does not do this to look good or be someone important. He just selflessly spends hours for one thing – the kids.”

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

mAAgic Flight!

We love mAAgic Flight! Did I say that loud enough? WE LOVE MAAGIC FLIGHT!!

The Dream Factory was proud to be a part of mAAgic Flight again this year. The excitement in Orlando was unreal, felt by the families we sent there and the volunteers who traveled to take part in the magical experience. The children arrived, one by one, at the Orlando Airport on Sept. 21 to a roaring crowd of Dream Factory supporters. The first child off the plane that day was little Emma from Syracuse – it just so happened that Emma was also the Syracuse Chapter’s first-ever dream fulfillment, adding to the excitement. And the final child to arrive, later that night, was Desire from St. Louis. Desire came off the terminal (facing all her screaming supporters), stopped her wheelchair and raised a fist in the air. What a way to end the day!

The children were then escorted to Give Kids The World in central Florida, possibly the most magical place in the world, where they stayed for seven days and got the opportunity to visit the amusement parks in the area. They were at GKTW until Sept. 27, and then they were flown back to their home cities spread across the United States. The Dream Factory was pleased to make 14 children’s dream come true.

mAAgic Flight is sponsored by The Something mAAgic Foundation, American Airlines and GKTW. This year, The Dream Factory and three other children’s wish-granting organizations took part. It is the annual marquee event for The Something mAAgic Foundation, offering children with life-threatening medical conditions a week-long “unforgettable” experience.

And that – an unforgettable experience – it was. It truly was awesome! Emma, Desire, and the 12 other children from The Dream Factory made memories that they can carry with them forever. These memories were much needed for the struggles these children face daily. And we at The Dream Factory were so happy to be a part of that.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Dream Factory: Who are we?

It all started with a single dream in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, in 1980. And now, more than 30 years and countless dreams later, it has blossomed into one of the largest children’s wish-granting organizations in the nation! Founder Charlie Henault wanted to do something special to help 7-year-old Tammy Keel and her family in Hopkinsville – sending them to the magical place of Disney World – and he never imagined it would lead to what is now known as The Dream Factory. So many people are thankful for Charlie and the so many others who have made The Dream Factory what it is today.

The national headquarters is located in Louisville, Kentucky, and serves almost 40 chapters scattered across the United States. We are volunteer-driven with more than 5,000 volunteers and only four paid staff members at the national office. The mission is to grant dreams to critically and chronically ill children from the ages of three through 18.

Now is an exciting time to be a part of The Dream Factory. We have recently formed a Long-Range Planning Committee to help lead us in the right direction with needed changes in the future. That committee has since been broken down into four sub-committees: Fundraising, IT, Marketing and Organizational Effectiveness. We are fresh from our 2012 National Convention in Orlando, and eager to get rolling on new ideas. This blog, along with other initiatives, is one of those ideas. Please like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dreamfactoryhq, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/hqdreamfactory, visit our website www.dreamfactoryinc.org (we are in the process of launching a new, updated website in early 2013!) and continue to read this blog.

From all of us at The Dream Factory, thank you for your interest in our wonderful organization! And please help spread the word!