Permalink  Posted by on February 17, 2017  Community Involvement  No Responses »
Feb 172017
 

It’s been a long off-season; let’s go plant some trees!

The Rose City Riveters will be participating in the March 4th Saturday tree plant with Friends of Trees at Errol Heights. All ages are welcome (volunteers under 18 will need a signed waiver) and all Riveters are welcome.

From Friends of Trees:
Please arrive by 8:45am to register and be assigned to a planting crew. Be sure to dress appropriately for the weather: wear sturdy shoes/boots (rubber rain boots are perfect if you have them), rain-proof layers are always great, and be prepared to get a little dirty. We provide gloves, tools, and planting guidance–as well as breakfast snacks and hot coffee/tea to get everyone fueled up. We’ll be planting hundreds of native trees and shrubs to improve watershed health and add beauty to this special site — and this work wouldn’t be possible without volunteer groups like yours!

If you have any questions, feel free to email this event’s organizer Hannah Mueller: han.mueller.nah@gmail.com

Friends of Trees can be contacted at Volunteer@FriendsofTrees.org or (503) 595-0213

Hope to see you March 4th! Sign up by clicking here.

A Record Year

 Posted by on December 21, 2016  Community Involvement  1 Response »
Dec 212016
 

When we started this historic fourth season of NWSL, we were enamored with our Twitter-hip new coach and snazzy lineup, but mindful of the challenges we would face losing so many players to the Rio Olympics. One thing was clear: the Thorns would need our support more than ever. We needed to be organized and loud, and continue to set the bar for other NWSL SGs starting to make more visible efforts. 

Thanks to the success of the tifo donation pin and our already-solid merchandise sales, Riveters’ operating budget sat at a comfortable level early in the season. It became clear we had the capacity to do a bit more.

I volunteered to represent the Riveters on (read: invited myself to) the Community Outreach committee for 107IST. Since we didn’t have a specific seat there already, and I was kind of a noob, I just brought cookies and hoped for the best.

Needless to say, they were all extremely welcoming and eager to help us extend our impact. As it turns out, all I needed to do was ask a few simple questions and magical things started to happen around me.

We chose a handful of local organizations for our Match Day Donation Drives, anticipating possibly meager first-attempt results…and we were totally wrong. Let’s just say I now know the exact diaper capacity of a 2010 Prius and it’s pretty impressive.

By the end of the 2016 season, we made over a dozen donation drops from the match day drives. It felt so good to stand there and just stuff the bare shelves at some of these places. Our mission of choosing severely underfunded organizations made me see just how quickly those resources get used, though.

In 2016 we also sold A TON of merchandise. New t-shirts, some really nice patches and buttons, and a trusty old bandana had our bank balance looking very tidy, indeed. After sorting out next season’s operating needs, I am proud to say the Rose City Riveters were able to donate $5000 back into our community for the first time!

Five $1000 donations were made this week to:

    Rose Haven http://rosehaven.org/

    Raphael House http://raphaelhouse.com/

    ImpactNW https://impactnw.org/

    OutsideIN http://outsidein.org/

    The Living Room    http://www.thelivingroomyouth.org/

These funds are going to have a huge impact on these small, local organizations, and I can’t thank you all enough for pitching in cash, great ideas, supplies, vehicles, and braun when you had them available. We have some new volunteers joining the ranks, and planning for 2017 is well underway. I am so excited to see how much bigger, better and, most importantly, LOUDER the Rose City Riveters can be!

Sep 082016
 

The last Match Day Drive of the 2016 NWSL *regular* season is coming up on Sunday. Since school is kicking off, we are working with the HOPE program to replenish their school supplies for Vancouver-area school kids.

The Homeless Outreach Promoting Education (HOPE) program is a program that works with area homeless shelters to provide support to families with school-aged children. The goals of HOPE are to help students maintain consistent education while their families are in transition, provide educational opportunities to homeless students, and ensure that the schools and families are meeting students’ needs. HOPE works with families to get kids registered for school, arranges transportation for kids to keep going to the same school even if they move outside the school’s boundaries, provides tutoring and after-school programs, and helps families find resources in our community.

The Riveters are asking for donations of basic school supplies to help HOPE achieve their mission. The organization has requested the following items:

  • Markers
  • 3-ring binders
  • Metal blade scissors
  • #2 pencils – mechanical pencils are not permitted
  • Colored pencils
  • Scientific calculators
  • Composition notebooks

Please bring these items to the Fanladen (1633 SW Alder) before the last home match. The Fanladen will be open from 4:30pm – 6:00pm on Sunday, September 11th. school_supplies2

Aug 302016
 

As we get ready for the last three home games of the regular season, it’s time to fire up the Match Day Drive again!

For this drive, we’re asking for tampons, pads, condoms, diapers, and baby formula. This may seem like an odd assortment of items, but all are listed as critical needs by the organizations we have been supporting all season. Most of these women’s health-related items are expensive and overlooked during your average donation drive.

The need for pads and tampons is high given that these items are not covered by food stamps and the annual costs for these items can be over $70 a year per person, as noted in a New York Times article in early 2015.

logo-janus_fbThe donations will be collected for Rose Haven and for Janus Youth Program, which has an Access Center located right above the Fanladen. Janus works with area runaway and homeless youth on emergency shelter,  job placement, access to services, and education assistance. Janus was founded in 1972 and today serves over 6,000 Portland youths and families per year.

This Match Day Drive will last through the next two home games. Please bring your donations to the Fanladen (1633 SW Alder) before or after the Thorns matches on Sunday, 9/4 and Wednesday, 9/7. The Fanladen is open 2 hours before kickoff and for 1 hour after the team takes their lap.

Read more about our previous drives here.

Aug 032016
 

Everyone’s journey as a soccer supporter is unique. For me, the rhythm of the game has been the underlying beat driving my life. I have lived in a lot of different places, experiencing and being influenced by soccer in all of them. However, it wasn’t until I joined the 107ist and the Riveters that I felt like I had found a true home in the soccer community. We are a family that mobilizes our love for the beautiful game to help the community around us. “Spread the Love” has become synonymous with soccer support in Portland and in our other affiliated communities. It is an important part of being a Portland supporter, one which we take very seriously.

In the last few months, the Riveters have been driving this charitable ethos by supporting not one, but three organizations in our match day drives. These three worthy causes are Impact NW, Rose Haven, and Raphael House. These organizations were chosen because each one offers key programs and support to the most vulnerable populations in Portland.

Impact NW works to help combat poverty and empower people to better their lives. They help an estimated 36,000 people each year to break the generational cycle of poverty. They have programs that help a wide variety of people, including children, families, seniors, and adults with disabilities. These programs include everything from domestic abuse help, to parenting courses, to housing and food assistance. Impact NW works closely with other community organizations, schools, businesses, and governmental agencies to help as many people as possible.

Rose Haven focuses specifically on helping women and children who are victims of abuse, have lost their homes, or have had other disruptive life experiences. In 2015 alone they helped over 3,000 people. They are LGBTQ friendly, and they also accept pets of all kinds. They have a health clinic, a community center, and a place to “shop” for clothing on site. In addition to these services, they also offer food and financial aid, career assistance, help in transitioning to permanent housing, creative courses, and support groups. Here is what they said to us in a recent letter:

Photo Credit: Marrion Kaufman

Clothing rack at Rose Haven. Photo credit: Marrion Kaufman

“Thank you so much for supporting the lifesaving work of Rose Haven. We are so delighted to be in a partnership with your amazing group. The oral hygiene products recently donated as a result of your drive are so appreciated. We want you to know that you have played a significant role in helping the increasing number of women and children who are suffering from homelessness and abuse in our community. Because of you, we are able to maintain sanctuary for those who need it most.”

Raphael House also helps victims of abuse, assisting people of all ages, genders, backgrounds, and sexual orientations. On site they have an emergency shelter, a food pantry, a clothing closet, as well as an advocacy center to help people get back on their feet. They have career resources such as resume writing help, an interview style counselor, and computers and phones to help people with their job searches. Over half of the people they help are children, so homework help is available, as well as a safe space for children to play basketball and soccer. They also offer support groups, crafts, yoga, and therapy animals to help people heal from the trauma they have experienced.

Over the last few months we have collected a total of 1,571 oral care, bath supply, and pantry items for these three organizations. This equates to 394 pounds of supplies which have gone to help people in need. Out of these totals, 209 pounds of food were collected for Impact NW, completely filling their bare pantry. Those provisions have specifically helped people who needed emergency food assistance. We were also able to collect 937 travel-sized personal care items for Rose Haven and 178 full-sized personal care items for Raphael House. These donations have assisted the many different types of people who have come into these organizations needing assistance to get out of the difficult and sometimes dangerous situations in which they found themselves. Our support has helped people get back on their feet, allowing them another start at life and helping to break cycles of poverty and abuse.

Photo Credits: Marrion Kaufman

Impact NW pantry (before). Photo credit: Marrion Kaufman

Impact NW pantry (after). Photo credit: Marrion Kaufman

 

We will continue to collect more donations in our match day drives, so keep your eye out for additional opportunities to give. However, if you would like to find out more about these worthy organizations or want more information on volunteering your time, click the links below:

Jul 272016
 

The Reign may be coming to Portland this Saturday, but the heat is here to stay!!

Please bring donations that help members of our community as the temperatures rise. We are working with Rose Haven and Raphael House to collect sunscreen, reusable water bottles, sunglasses, hats, aloe lotion, or anything to beat the heat! Rose Haven works with women and children who are in need of daily resources but do not have stable housing. Raphael House provides transitional housing to victims of abuse and their families.

Please drop off your full-sized or travel-sized items before or after the match on Saturday. The Fanladen will be open from 5:30pm to 7pm and again after the Thorns take their final lap.

This is the FINAL match before the Olympic break, so hit up those summer sales while you still can!

Smiling Summer Sun with Suntan Lotion

Jul 012016
 

Can you believe we are already in the middle of the season?

For this Match Day Drive, we are asking Riveters to bring beauty and grooming supplies so we can donate them to organizations who are helping homeless women and victims of domestic violence throughout the Portland area. Our items will be donated to our partners at Rose Haven and Raphael House.

Many of those who are seeking the support of these two organizations do not have access to these daily comfort items that were a part of their routines. For many women, these are basic items to which they no longer have access. Being able to put on makeup or do your hair is not just about looking good, but also about emotional empowerment and being ready to take on the day! Many of the women served by Rose Haven and Raphael House are preparing themselves for events where they may need elevated confidence and support, such as job interviews, court dates, or children’s concerts.

Please bring new packages of makeup, lotion, hair product, hair supplies, hair brushes, combs, deodorant, and other beauty supply items to the Fanladen before you head into the match! Remember to keep all hair types and skin colors in mind while shopping. The Fanladen is located at 1633 SW Alder and is open 2 hours before the Thorns kickoff and for an hour after each match. This drive will be in effect for July 2nd and July 9th, so if you forget or are out of town this weekend, bring it to the next!

Jun 212016
 

The Thorns are playing Chicago this week, so we thought we would do a socks and underpants drive. If you squint, you can see the connection (white sox = sock drive).

Please bring packages of new socks, underpants, bras (and extenders!), and any other undergarments you would like to contribute. The recipients will be adult women (plus sizes are a plus) and children.

We will be contributing these items to three different organizations: two that we have worked with before and we know the people they serve are in need, and a new organization. The two existing organizations are Rose Haven and Raphael House. As a quick reminder, Rose Haven works with women and their children who do not have steady, consistent housing. They offer day services such as warm meals, new clothes, personal hygiene items, and community events. Raphael House serves those who are or have been victims of domestic violence. They have a undisclosed facility where these individuals and families can go and receive support as they make a transition from a violent environment. Candle in circle (2)

The new organization we will be collecting resources for is Rahab’s Sisters. This group serves vulnerable and exploited women in the Portland area. They are working to provide food and new clothing to the people they serve. We want to be able to provide them with socks, underpants and bras to help those in need.

Our mission at Rahab’s Sisters is to offer “Radical Hospitality” to vulnerable and exploited women in the Portland Metro area, especially those that have been impacted by the sex industry, domestic violence, poverty, substance abuse, and homelessness.

Their vision of living in a city where all women are safe ties in with what the Riveters stand for. They have an active social calendar with events and fundraisers about which we hope to help spread the news, and in which we hope to participate in the future.

The Fanladen will be open from 5pm – 6:30pm on Wednesday, June 22nd for donations. We will also be open for 1 hour after the match, from 9pm to 10pm, if you have anything you need to drop off.

 

 

May 252016
 

For the Thorns’ third home match, we have a new Match Day Drive.

This week, the items we’re pooling are small. They like to travel, and they are needed to support those who don’t have stable homes or are seeking shelter from domestic violence. These items clean up well and love a little shower time.

Stop by the Fanladen to drop off your travel-sized and full-sized sized shampoo, conditioner, soap, body wash, baby care products, and hair products including activator, relaxer, and hair grease before the match vs. Seattle. The Fanladen (1633 SW Alder) will be open from 2-3:30pm on Sunday, May 29th.

This Drive is for Rose Haven and Raphael House. We worked with Rose Haven for our Oral Care Drive in April and as a reminder, they provide support for homeless women and children in Portland.

Raphael House is a new one for the Riveters. They work with those impacted by domestic violence and provide a safe space to help start the transition to new housing in Portland. They also offer advocacy programs and operate a 24-hour crisis line. logo

We believe that everyone deserves to live a life free from violence. The mission of Raphael House is to engage our entire community in non-violent living through advocacy, education, and community outreach, and by providing a safe haven from domestic violence.

The items we are collecting will be used by the women and children who are seeking help in their Emergency Shelter. Raphael House has 11 living areas: 9 for families, and 2 for individual adults. Raphael House provides on-site access to food, clothing, household supplies, and toiletries. Every year the Emergency Shelter serves 130 adults and children.

Our drive will help Raphael House continue to support this underserved community.

May 212016
 

On May 18th, the Riveters’ Community Outreach Crew dropped off our Oral Care Drive donations at Rose Haven. During that visit, we got a tour of their facilities and developed a better sense of how they are making an impact in our community.

Rose Haven, located in NW Portland on 18th and Irving, provides assistance to 70-90 guests a day, or about 3,000 people a year. These guests visit a total of 15,000 times a year with holidays and busy periods. Guests can have warm meals, access to clothing, shoes, personal supplies, and medical care, as well as participate in community events. Rose Haven operates out of the basement of the First Immanuel Lutheran Church’s administrative building. We met up with Katie O’Brien, who is the Community Outreach & Development Officer for Rose Haven. She showed us around their modest facility, which is a safe haven for women and children.

We have an open door policy, and accept any woman in any condition who needs our help.  Staff and volunteers form a compassionate and supportive team for women who are traumatized by homelessness, abuse, and other disruptive life challenges. Rose Haven is a safe, respectful environment where change begins. We address basic needs, and help women build confidence and sustainable lives for themselves. Through reflection of trust and mutual respect, the foundation on which personal healing and healthy choice making begin.

Gabby Rosas, Katie O'Brien, and Marrion Skinner with the donations from the Rose City Riveters' first Match Day Drive for Rose Haven

Gabby Rosas, Katie O’Brien from Rose Haven, and Marrion Skinner with the donations from the Rose City Riveters’ first Match Day Drive

During the tour, we got to watch guests play Bingo as well as enjoy a hot meal served by volunteers. Rose Haven has several community partners who donate meals to their guests, be it full meals from Elephants Deli or sandwiches from a local shop. While Rose Haven does not have an on-site kitchen with the capacity to cook meals from scratch, they do have enough room to prep the donated meals. The ability to help with the basics, such as a healthy meal, allows guests to focus on their other needs.

Rose Haven also has a store on site full of clean, donated clothes, shoes, underpants, bras, and hygiene products. There are no cash transactions in the store, as each guest has access to “shop” and pick out new articles once every 30 days. They then can get advice as to how to make different outfits out of the choices they made, whether they are going in for a court appearance or visiting with their kids. The assistance Rose Haven provides is to help build comfort and make to take away some of the stressful parts of their guests’ everyday lives so they can focus on finding ways to improve their environment.

Women can come in with their children, too. They can also bring in their pets. Rose Haven works to always have a stock of pet foods, as they know that pets are some people’s companions.

It was a very inspiring visit. Rose Haven strives to create a safe place for any woman to come and seek out support. While the Riveters were able to donate over 35 pounds of oral care products (200+ toothbrushes, 90+ tubes of toothpaste), we were also able to experience how quickly they go through their donations. Helping 70+ women a day takes a lot of resources. We will continue to work with Katie and her team on future events and drives.

 


 

As a follow-up to our first Match Day Drive post, I want to provide some additional information regarding our Match Day Drives and other Community Outreach opportunities.

One area in which that the Riveters have wanted to do more, but have not been financially able to in the past, is outreach. Historically, we have engaged in ticket exchange and merch production/sales to help fund our tifo and game day operations.  Everything had been self-sustaining at the minimum; we’ve reused tifo materials until they had too many layers of paint for seams to hold in overhead pulls, or we reused the materials from past displays to keep costs low.

We had a very successful “Tifo Superhero” fund drive this spring where we were able to raise $3,400 from the sale of limited-edition pins. This funding, along with some other donations earmarked for tifo, will support all of our planned tifo activities for 2016. This means that we need another focus for the ticket exchange and merch proceeds aside from our operating expenses.

We plan to still generate revenue, but we have minimal operating expenses (smoke, flags, photocopies, upfront merch production costs) that need to be covered. There’s also a little trophy we like to hand out at the end of the season. But those are all costs that are easy enough for us to plan for. And we anticipate that the gear we put out this year will help us increase our capacity to do so much more.

Going forward, resources will be set aside to aid in community outreach. This year we are working with quite a few different agencies throughout the Portland area to get them the physical donations they need through the Match Day Drives. We want the capacity to provide them with additional support as well. We want to start being a bigger voice in the community, as well as take on small projects where we see a need. We want to be able to contribute our time, our energy, and our resources to helping those who need it the most. Buying Riveters merch is going to help us do all of this.

We also want your input on our merch line. We have set up an email address for you to send us your ideas, be it in the form of a description, a rough sketch, an item you would like us to make, or even a full-on design. If you want it, let us know! Email us at merchideas@rosecityriveters.org, and the design team will review your submission and send a response. Note that for copyright reasons, merch designs cannot include the word “Thorns” or any player likenesses.

As our focus pivots toward community outreach, we want to make sure that all of our members are aware of our financial shift as well.