Monday, Aug. 15 was one of those picture perfect “Pure Michigan” evenings. The weather was warm and the breeze was light — an ideal setting to support Women’s Caring Programs. This year’s Twilight Gathering was held at the home of Kelly Rossman-McKinney; she and 17 friends and business women in the Lansing area served as co-hostesses. I was running a few minutes later than I had planned, which often is the case in my crazy life. I pulled onto Canyon Drive in Delta Township looking for the evening’s event, which, as it turned out, was easy to spot. All I had to do was follow the 200 plus women headed down the street toward the yard with the big white tent. Music was playing and I could hear friends greeting friends, all talking and laughing at once. I love a festive gathering, especially in support of a good charity. Along with great music, there was wonderful food and celebrity bar tenders and servers — all adding to the fun. I was not familiar with Women’s Caring Program or their signature event, Twilight Gatherings, until my invitation arrived a couple of months ago. Because I had been invited by a dear friend, I didn’t want to attend uninformed, so I did a little research. Women’s Caring Program has a vision and mission that spoke to me: “A legacy of caring, child by child. Serve as leaders for supporting children and families on the road to independence through early childhood development.” That small group of women, with a big vision, meeting on a front porch in 1979 has developed into a state-wide group that attracts more than 800 women to their annual garden parties, Twilight Gatherings. This year, six garden parties are being held throughout Michigan. Women’s Caring Program, the only nonprofit of its kind in Michigan, advocates for early care and education, working to break the cycle of poverty for children (birth to age 5) from working, disadvantaged families. The working poor are becoming a large segment in today’s society. To date the program has helped 1,000 children all over Michigan. As I left an evening of catching up with friends that I don’t see nearly enough, I reflected a bit; it felt good to support children who just need a little advantage. I’m glad I got a chance to help.
Deborah Ginsburg is a community volunteer and is employed with Sparrow Health System.