Editor’s Note: (914) Cares drew our attention recently and we learned of its numerous charitable efforts in Westchester. These began with Dawn Greenberg and Jessica Reinmann who together are the founders of ‘Chappaqua Cares, Chappaqua Shares.’ Launched in 2014, it intended to “introduce our neighbors to lesser known local nonprofits and their needs. The goal was to channel donations of goods and volunteer hours to these organizations,” stated Greenberg and Reinmann.
What you need to know about (914) Cares
The two founders explain the name change, too: “Initially our focus was on food, clothing and toys and was limited to organizations in Chappaqua for whom we ran short-term drives. Our focus quickly grew into longer-term support for the pantries closest to Chappaqua with an annual fundraising event, Empty Bowls. In addition, as part of our goal to teach children the importance of volunteerism, we created events for families like card-marking for nursing homes and pajama/book collection for Project Night Night. Because our goals and mission have broadened over time to include nonprofits throughout the County and to involve communities beyond New Castle, in 2018 we updated our name to (914) Cares.”
Empty Bowls is part of an international grassroots effort to combat hunger with fundraising events reminding participants of the empty bowls throughout the world. Our organization has raised over $300,000 with annual Empty Bowls events in 2015, 2016 and 2017. In addition to providing financial support through these events to area pantries and organizations that combat hunger, we seek to educate our communities on the pervasive rate of hunger in our County.
Kids’ Kloset is a volunteer-driven program that provides Westchester County children and families in need with donated clothing and related items free of charge. Since Kids’ Kloset was opened in 2011, it has provided over 16,000 bags of clothing and diapers to local children. Children, newborn to 18 years of age, receive “bags of love” with clothing prepared into outfits free of rips, stains, and missing buttons. The bags represent more than clothing. We believe they boost the confidence and esteem of the youth, potentially helping to improve grades at school and reduce stress in the household. And parents can be assured their children have clean, appropriate, well-fitting clothing.
We assist our Community Partners with publicity and execution of donation drives for a variety of items needed for basic human needs including: clothing, food, diapers, toiletries, books, school supplies, toys and gifts. The focus is on new or gently used items getting quickly into the hands of those who can most use them.
Volunteer Drives are used to help area nonprofit organizations fill volunteer hours for both short-term and ongoing programs. We help provide volunteer hours for food pantry stocking and disbursement, sorting of goods from drives, fundraising events, reading mentoring, cooking and many other requests.
Family Support, Frequently we help provide local families with immediate short-term help including clothing, housewares, food drives and/or meal trains. We also provide referrals to agencies able to help with long-term support.
For more information, visit 914Cares.org.