Welcome to the brand new Random Acts of Flowers e-newsletter! We're excited to have the opportunity to keep you up-to-date on goings-on in Knoxville on a more frequent basis, so that you can see how delivering hope is changing lives bouquet-by-bouquet, person-by-person.
But, don't worry! We aren't going to clog up your inbox! We hope that you will stay subscribed so that you can see the power of flowers firsthand!
Thank you for your continued support of our mission!
Mandie, Larsen, and the whole RAF Team
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On March 3rd, RAF celebrated the 9th anniversary of its first official delivery.
Our goal is to hit our 100,000th delivery in Knoxville by our 10th anniversary next year. We need to serve an average of 1,289 individuals per month or roughly 322 individuals per week for the next year to meet this goal. We can do it with your continued support!
PROGRAM DIRECTOR CELEBRATES A YEAR OF SERVICE
On April 21st, our Program Director Mandie Beeler celebrated her one-year anniversary with RAF! In her first year, the Knoxville branch delivered 14,909 bouquets, recycled 20,082 vases, and logged 9,454 volunteer hours! Mandie's big, infectious smile, and dedication to delivering hope are two things that all of us at the Knoxville branch and National office look forward to every day!
On July 1st, at the beginning of our next fiscal year, Mandie's title will change to Executive Director, better reflecting her position and range of duties at RAF Knoxville.
VOLUNTEERING: A WORK OF HEART
After her friend (and fellow RAF volunteer) Barbara Sharpe, encouraged her to use her work’s volunteer hours at RAF, Lisa Smith quickly realized that our mission “was something I wanted to do on a regular basis once I retired.”
“Re-purposing flowers to bring smiles to others really warms my heart.” She says. And, she reports that her favorite part of the mission is “making people feel like they are loved and remembered, that someone cares about them.”
For Lisa, one of the best things about volunteering with RAF are her fellow volunteers. “I've also made many friends during the workshops and enjoy their company during that time. We work hard, but we have so much fun!” When she’s not volunteering, Lisa enjoys gardening, hiking, and performing in her church choir.
VOLUNTEER EAST TENNESSEE FEATURE
In April, representatives fromVolunteer East Tennessee paid a visit to the workshop to chat with Mandie about the importance of volunteers to our mission.
The Flower Pot is as much a cornerstone of downtown Knoxville as the venerable Tennessee Theatre and Tomato Head restaurant! But, owner and florist Emily Campen makes her way west on Middlebrook several times a year to lead excited participants at our Flowers After Hours events. “Even though I work with flowers every day, it is exciting to see the joy they bring to the volunteers as they learn to create arrangements, and the surprised smiles of the recipients.” She says.
Since first discovering RAF in 2015, Emily has been an incredible supporter. “I was instantly excited about the mission and the incredible way that people in all parts of the organization are impacted.”
And, she wants people thinking about supporting RAF to know that “whether you have a few hours a week or just a few hours a month, you can make a lifelong memory for someone in a hospital or nursing home. Stop thinking about it and come join the fun.”
As a local florist, Emily is in a unique position to see exactly how the full circle of delivering hope happens, and she shared one of her favorite RAF memories with us that illustrates it perfectly -
“There was a local teacher who passed away and it was specifically mentioned in her obituary that the flowers would be donated to RAF and that sunflowers were her favorite. We had so many orders and created so many gorgeous memorial pieces that I was excited just knowing that these flowers were going to have a purpose beyond the funeral service. It happened that I was going to be teaching my first class at RAF, and when I arrived there were buckets and buckets of sunflowers from that funeral service. It was beautiful to know that I had helped create the first pieces to celebrate a life well lived, and would go on to create more bouquets to help continue the legacy of a great woman.”
Wednesday, August 1, 2018 6-8pm
3500 Workman Rd. Suite 101B
Knoxville, TN 37921
The $35 ticket price includes container, flowers, and instruction on floral arranging.
A professional florist will instruct participants in a hands-on demonstration of basic floral design. Each attendee will produce a floral arrangement they will take with them and a second arrangement that will be delivered to an ill or elderly member of our community, adding enrichment to RAF’s mission of delivering hope and kindness.
Coffee, water, and light appetizers will be provided. BYOB for those 21 and over.
First Walmart Grant - Larsen and Mandie stopped by the Walmart store in Turkey Creek on the morning of April 24th to receive RAF Knoxville's first Walmart Foundation grant of $2,500!
Days-of-Service Groups - We have had many wonderful groups visit the workshop for Teambuilding and Day-of-Service activities in the past few months, including our Perennial Society member Functional Pathways, PYA's Summer Leadership Conference, the Independent Order of Foresters, Pilot/Flying J, and more!
SAVE THE DATE!!
Random Acts of Flowers is turning 10
and we want to celebrate with you!
Mark your calendars for a Happy Hour Birthday Bash
on July 24th from 5:30-7:00pm
at Clancy's in Downtown Knoxville!
Deliveries of Hope 88,000+ in Knoxville 323,000+ Nationwide
Vases Recycled 102,750+ in Knoxville 341,500+ Nationwide
Volunteer Hours 49,000+ in Knoxville 155,500+ Nationwide