Fundraiser used to benefit locals

By Kimberly Jenkins -

Prizewinner Sandra Reiser sitting next to her dog and Christmas tree.

Prizewinner Sandra Reiser sitting next to her dog and Christmas tree.

Fundraisers are used to raise money for many different things to help its particular cause. The AAUW/Portsmouth uses its Basket Fundraiser to benefit educational and or women’s programs.

The Portsmouth branch of the American Association of University Women recently welcomed the twelve days of Christmas with a second raffle to raise funds to support local professional women and organizations. An earlier raffle, a tailgate quilt won by Gerrie Nourse of Lucasville, raised money to support the group’s two local education programs. One scholarship benefited students attending Shawnee State University while the other scholarship provided a local middle school girl a week long STEM opportunity at Denison University in Granville, Ohio the summer of 2018.

The most recent raffle, a Christmas Basket filled with a treasure trove of items, supported professional women and organizations locally, nationally and globally.

The winner of this year’s Christmas Basket raffle was Sandra Reiser of West Portsmouth. The basket contents included a primitive print, Ohio State University articles, Christmas décor, a cookbook, a bottle of Spanish wine, body lotion and numerous other items.

For nearly two decades the Portsmouth chapter of the American Association of University Women has raised funds that benefit the Eleanor Roosevelt Fund through their annual Christmas Basket raffle. Although this annual fundraiser supported professional women all over the world, it has also benefited a local non profit organization as well as a local educator in years past. The award was created in 1989 to honor Eleanor Roosevelt who was a role model for women and girls during her lifetime.

The Eleanor Roosevelt Fund Award celebrates an individual, organization, institution, or project “for outstanding contributions to equality and education of women and girls.” While the award focuses on education, it is not necessary that the recipient of the award be an educator.

The fund is awarded not only to those in teaching and education, but to those active in research and legal and legislative work who promote equality for women and girls. The amount awarded is normally $5000. Past winners have included founders of non profits, professors, education organizations, publishers, economists, in addition to several others.

AAUW National has awarded $3.7 million to women and girls in just this past year. It is a top rated 501 (c) (3) charity. The local organization has been around since 1948. The national organization has been in existence since 1881.

Wanda Dengel, program vice president said, “The local group has been a positive and effective influence in our community since 1948. The Portsmouth School Board president referred to the group as a ‘great potential educational force in Portsmouth’ in those early days of AAUW/Portsmouth. Our organization has provided numerous scholarships and grants to local individuals and institutions for over 50 years.”

Dengel listed some of the things the AAUW/Portsmouth has done in our community:

  • Hold annual raffles to raise funds for scholarships and grants ; Provide annual scholarships to SSU students;
  • Provide an annual scholarship for Be WISE Camp at Denison University in Granville OH, week long STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) resident camp open to girls entering the 7th or 8th grade in the fall of the upcoming school year classes, recreation, socializing, fun and games while experiencing life on a college campus
  • Offer a $5000 grant to professional women and organizations projects that contribute to the equality of women and girls with the focus of award on education, although the recipient of the award need not be an educator, besides educators, those involved with research, legal work, or legislative work that promote equality for women and girl.

Dengel said, “We take interesting road trips: Governor’s Mansion, Ripley and the Underground Railroad, etc.”

Once again, this organization, like many others in our community, has taken it upon themselves to raise money that in turn, is used for a very good cause.

Prizewinner Sandra Reiser sitting next to her dog and Christmas tree. Sandra Reiser sitting next to her dog and Christmas tree.

By Kimberly Jenkins

Reach Kimberly Jenkins 740-353-3101 ext. 1928

Reach Kimberly Jenkins 740-353-3101 ext. 1928