Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Kate's Kart...a reality in the making!

I'm pretty excited about my phone conversation today. Thanks to a lead (Thanks Wendy!) I talked with the child-life specialist at our local Children's Hospital (Lutheran) and she was really excited about the potential of doing a book cart. YEAH! This really was our 1st passion for honoring Kate and I'm so glad that it looks like it will work out. After thinking about it...even though Kate only spent like 17 of her 150+ hospitalized days at Lutheran...the possibilities of us getting involved and really playing a special role is a lot more realistic since it is our local hospital. And even though Lutheran deals with very few heart kids...they are still kids...who are sick...and in the hospital...and every sick kid is deserving of a little encouragement.

So...it sounds like we will be able to get a rolling cart...stock it with books and then take it around the hospital floor and let the kids pick out new books to keep! We're not sure how often yet...probably just once a week until we see how it goes...how many books we have...have much funding we have...etc. The neat thing is that with just a little "official volunteer training" from the hospital...we personally will be able to do the passing out...which I think will be really good therapy for me! But...we want lots of people to get involved and help pass out the books if that is something that interests you!

So...now I have a project...but I need some help!

1. We need to set up some sort of non-profit foundation/organization. We'll need a lawyer who is willing to do some pro-bono work and some financial people who could guide us along this process. There is no current foundation at Lutheran that we can get under....so it looks like we need to do something on our own for now.

2. We will need a team of 5-6 people who have been trained (like an hour commitment) by Lutheran as a volunteer. These people would then volunteer once every 4-6 weeks to help deliver the books to the kids.

3. Once we get our foundation set up...we will need books. Or...if anyone has contacts/leads with book stores or suppliers who might be willing to give us discounts. Or...if you're willling to make those contacts! Or...if you're out and about and see a book on sale and want to donate it...that's awesome too! The important thing to remember is that the pediatric floor deals with infants to 18 year olds...we will need older age books too---and maybe even books for the parents too! In an effort to keep it nice and professional...we will only be passing out new books.

4. And...we need this project covered in prayer. If you're a praying person...would you just lift this idea/project up to the Lord. What an opportunity to show the love of Christ...by passing out a book...to so many hurting people.

I'm sure lots more things (publicity, brochure, fund-raising) will come up...but right now the biggie is getting the fund set up and beginning to train the lead volunteers. (Non-trained people can pass out books...as long as they are accompanied by someone trained!) So...if you can help...or know someone we would really appreciate it. Our email is: aklayman4@verizon.net
My dream is that we would actually be able to start passing out books by her birthday (June 26) at the absolute latest...if sooner...even better!

Who knows...maybe 10 years from now...some celebrity will be playing for the "Kate Layman Foundation" on Celebrity Jeopardy and we'll have "Kate's Karts" all over the nation! Doesn't hurt to dream big!! (Hey...anybody know Oprah....she's "giving big" this season! ) Thanks again to everyone who gave us great ideas....and great leads. But most of all...thank you for helping us to honor Kate...cause she is so deserving. Love to all...this isn't the last you'll hear about this!


Melissa said...

I am so glad that you are on your way to making your dream a reality. I'm sure Lutheran will appreciate this and the kids and their parents will be blessed to have you touch their lives! God bless you all!

Anonymous said...

I'm in! I think the Oprah idea is a great one. We need to contact her office when it is set up. Nana

Judy Davis said...

Dear Krista, Count me in to help with the giving of books. Your idea is so great!
Love, Judy Davis

Anonymous said...

How Wonderful!
Count me in!
What a privilege to push Kate's Kart and give out books.
I'm contacting Librarian friends to see about book deals. grandma

The Portas said...

I LOVE IT! What a wonderful, kind, giving thing for you to do. And the fact that you're doing it all in Kate's honor makes it even better. You guys are going to make a difference in peoples' lives!

I wish I were closer. I'd be a willing volunteer!

We will definitely contribute to this effort in the prayer category. PRAYERS for much success and the spreading of love going your way!

Christi Overman said...

You should contact Oprah! Also, I teach first grade and we get SUPERcheap books from Scholastic Books for kids...brand new, and they do all kinds of deals. You can visit scholastic.com or email me if you'd like:


Anonymous said...

Krista, you can count me in too. I would love to pass out books or read books to little ones!
Anita Bates

Anne said...

I love books and the idea that more and more children will get new books is SO amazing. I know when I was young in the hospital if someone would have given me a book it would have meant the world! I know the parents will be SO excited too!
Usborne books are really popular around here. You should check out the website www.usbornebooks.com and see if there is someone in your area that sells them! Best wishes on this really great project!

Samantha said...

You can count on our prayers and LOTS of books! I will wait just a bit longer to buy any, just to give you some more time to get situated, but books will be coming your way! I am so happy that you are getting a chance to do this! I too wish I lived closer so that I could help distribute books to the kids...they will find such joy in Kate's Kart!


Kathy said...

Oh Krista...
You're going to be UP ALL NIGHT for weeks with your brain working on this!!!
We'll be sure to keep praying for you and when you're ready...we'll send TONS of books!!!
What a wonderful thing...a way to remember Kate and a way to help heal your heart!
It's so sweet...and you're so sweet to think of others!

Jen Barney said...

Hello. I have been reading your blog for quite some time. Everyday that I am reading, I am inspired by you and your family.
I am a teacher for FWCS and teach fourth grade. Next year I will loop with my students to fifth. I would like to help you get those books. I am going to speak with my principal Thursday and see if we can start a book drive in Kate's honor. I will fill him in with the details of it via your blog if you don't mind.
My question is if you would like for this book drive to be this year. We are starting our last quarter or would you like for us to start this as a year long drive for the 08-09 year.
I am very sure that he will agree with this- and if not school wide, we as a classroom community will sponsor this as our Fifth Grade Giving Project that we do each year. I would honored to do this in Kate's memory.

Anonymous said...

Greetings, Krista! (: YEA -- I'm so excited the Lutheran Children's Hospital lead worked out for you! (:

An idea for potential funding and books is Kohl's. They have their quarterly Kohl's Cares for Kids release of a "set" of books by one author and furry friends to go with the books. All proceeds raised from the sale of those items is earmarked for local children's charities. Perhaps you could work with one of the Kohl's in Fort Wayne to see if Kate's Kart could be added to the financialy funded list, or at least the list for donated copies of the set of each of the newly released books?

Best of luck to you! What an awesome ministry you are starting in Kate's name and memory! (:

Wendi (:

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful way to honor sweet Kate and a great way to channel some of your grief into something positive for others. I will be glad to search for books, distribute, and I will also be picking some brains for some funding ideas. Linda D.

Vanessa said...

I am so excited for you guys. Hey once you get things going, who knows how big this will get!!

Bonnie said...

Kate's Kart sounds awesome! I have a super sturdy book cart that I think would work. I may have an extra one or I could order one for you. It is a library book cart made of metal - taupe color, two sided so it has 6 slanted shelves. Really holds a lot of books!!
More soon after I do some checking. We used these book carts for our Canterbury library moves with the new construction and just are finishing up the last move in the next week or so.


Kathy said...

I hope you're ready for all the books!
Why don't you make a little montage telling Kate's story and where to send the books...and we can ALL post it on our blogs...then...thousands of people will see it and send them your way!!!
AND...email someone news reporter in your area. Tell them Kate's story and your idea...and THAT will surely get big time donors involved!
I lOVE the Kohl's idea...we always buy those books!

Anonymous said...

Ophrah gave money to wpta - call them...

Kirsten said...

i caught you comment on jen's a teacher's life blogspot. i checked out your blog, read, and was inspired. i work at the same school as jen. you can count me in. i will hook up with jen to see what is going on as far as our school getting together to help. god bless you and your family.

Anonymous said...

I just returned home and have not seen your BLOG for days and days. Count me in to help with the book cart idea in Kate's honor.
Margaret Lyng