“After losing my job due to Covid-19 while being six months pregnant, I felt so lost. I was able to establish enough to move out of the shelter on my own, but I struggled with finding furniture and items for my home. SNGA provided a much-needed bed for my kids, and lots of household items. Thanks so much for being such a blessing, to my family!”
—Client of SNGA’s Simple Household Needs program
‘SIMPLY SAYING’ (A NOTE FROM OUR FOUNDER, BRENDA RHODES)
We recently helped a woman who had spent most of her adult life in a shelter. Some people might wonder why she lived that way, but at SNGA we never ask our clients these kinds of questions. Lots of people out there were raised in poverty. It’s all they know. Our mission is just to help those caught in this vicious cycle by meeting their simple, but essential, needs as they get back on their feet. Back to that client. In going through the list of 80 kitchen/bed/bath items we offer to those who are getting furniture, our volunteer asked her if she wanted hangers. The woman wasn’t sure. “I’ve never used one before,” she said. “I’ve never lived anywhere with a closet where you could hang your clothes.”
This makes me cry. We of course did give her hangers and many other things for her and for her kids.
Because of you, our supporters, clients like this get the support they need. They feel seen and cared for, an invaluable and rare thing in this world. Some of you donate monthly (see testimonial below from our first Simply Caring donor ) which helps us ensure we can continue to pay rent and other ongoing bills. Others send donations when they can (a few shared their stimulus checks), or offer gently used donations of beds, furniture, and household items. Many kids receive brand-new birthday gifts either because you buy them or you contribute toward them. And it goes on and on. We have eight programs these days! The bottom line is – THANK YOU!!!
DONATION DRIVE ON SAT., MAY 15!
Our next Donation Drive is Sat., May 15, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at our Marietta warehouse. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for the address or with questions.
The donation drives after that are June 5 and June 19. Mark your calendars!
Here are some of the items we need most right now.
- Baby wipes (preferably unscented)
- Kitchen trash cans
- 13-gallon garbage bags (for our cleaning kits)
- Women’s underwear sizes 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8
- Baby items such as pacifiers, baby wash, shampoo, bib, bottles ($1 at the Dollar Tree)
NEW OR GENTLY USED ITEMS (in order of need):
- Full/Queen comforters
- Candles (larger size; no tea)
- Irons and ironing boards
- Toaster ovens
- DVD players
- Bunk beds, dressers/chest of drawers, nightstands, end tables, coffee tables, smaller student desks, bookshelves (not too large), small TV stands, TVs (working and cable-ready that one strong person can carry)
- Blankets – esp twin and full
- Funnels, dish pans, ice cube trays, extension cords
- Laptop computers
- DVDs for kids and adults
To see what we need the most at any time (we update about once a week), please visit:
YOUTUBER’S LIVESTREAM RAISES MONEY FOR SNGA
Brenda and Simple Needs GA made an appearance in the world of live streamed video games and YouTube posts. On May 1, Brenda’s 25-year-old nephew Joshua Rhodes ran a fundraiser for SNGA on his YouTube channel., which has more than 1,500 subscribers.
Josh, who works as an engineer and goes by the username Straitlace on YouTube, posts about the game “Xenoblade Chronicles 2” as well as games of his own design. Of late he has been intermittently streaming the game “Monster Hunter Rise.”
For his fundraiser, Josh designed a videogame on-the-fly based entirely on the suggestions of viewers. “The donations had certain rewards for meeting milestones, like showing off my pets on the stream,” he explained. “Over the course of six hours, we ended up making a simple game where the player could move around, pick up flowers and give them to characters, fight off squishy little enemies, and collect hats that gave them different superpowers like firing off lightning bolts or running faster.”
Josh raised about $200 to help Simple Needs GA’s clients in need. After watching the stream for a bit, Brenda even went over to her nephew’s house and made a “cameo” appearance where she talked about SNGA’s mission. “We got a new monthly donor the week prior when Josh announced the livestream,” Brenda noted. “The donor said that she had been looking for a Georgia agency to donate to, and she decided it would be us!”
Thanks so much to Josh for running the very cool fundraiser. Jokes Brenda: “Maybe our next one will require virtual reality goggles! Stay tuned!”
KENNESAW 6TH-GRADER IS COMMITTED TO SERVING OTHERS
Briana Gholston loves to do things like play Roblox with her friends or go roller-skating. But the sixth grader at Palmer Middle School in Kennesaw also does something quite unusual for someone her age: She frequently checks Simple Needs GA’s online list of our clients’ most-needed items.
The 11-year-old has donated all kinds of items on the list: mops, trashcans, towels, birthday gifts, bedding, socks, brooms, and more. “She knows the donation days and is always excited to see what is on the list,” said her mom, Sylvia.
In fact, Briana is so focused on community service that in December 2020 she was named Miss Georgia Queen In Action after entering a scholarship- and community service-based beauty pageant for Americas National Miss.
“Briana had to present a portfolio of her community service for a 24-month period,” Sylvia explains. “Prior to COVID, Briana would read to animals at Mostly Mutts on Wednesdays, place bins at different locations to collect toiletries for Elizabeth Inn Shelter, and drop off meals for Meals on Wheels.”
Once the pandemic hit, safety concerns meant there were fewer opportunities for in-person volunteering at local organizations. But instead of just waiting for it all to be over, Briana focused on doing Random Acts of Kindness for people in need. That could involve helping a stranger or even picking up trash on the side of the road, said Sylvia, who is herself a weekly volunteer at MUST Ministries.
Briana has even started her own program, called Bri’s Queens. “She has done so much,” Sylvia said. “She started Bri’s Queens so she could, in her own words, ‘give back because it makes me happy to make others happy.’ She began with donating her clothes, then it just took off from there.”
As part of that effort, Briana and Sylvia monitor the NextDoor app to find opportunities to give back, which is how they discovered SNGA. Meanwhile, Briana is a whirlwind of other activities: She’s in the chorus and orchestra and plays the viola. She dances (tap and ballet) and is an aspiring actress. “Her first acting role begins filming June 5th in Atlanta,” Sylvia said.
Thanks so much to Briana for her amazing work!
TESTIMONIAL FROM A LONGTIME CONTRIBUTOR TO SNGA
“Back in 2006, I met Brenda Rhodes, a fellow volunteer at Good Mews Cat Shelter in Marietta. At the time, she was the Chair of the Daily Care Volunteers who maintained the cleanliness of Good Mews for the needs of the kitties and cared. This was just one of her duties at the time.
When she decided to help humans via SNGA, I agreed to donate monthly and sometimes bring in-kind donations in. My Home Church, Multiplying Love, just sent some funds. Thank you to Saint Brenda, the Busiest Bee I know!”
65 NEW BOOKS FOR MBM!
Susannah McKay, a specialist with JustServe, recently toured our warehouse with some young volunteers [PICTURED, below] and donated 65 brand-new children’s books! We asked Susannah to tell us a bit about herself and her interest in SNGA.
“In our family, we love many things, but birthdays and books are pretty near the top. We learned about the My Birthday Matters program on JustServe, and we definitely wanted to do what we could to help. So we shared the SignUpGenius [created specifically for books] with many of our friends and hosted a book drive! We talked with family, friends, neighbors, and even past teachers. And in the end, we were able to collect 65 books for children’s birthdays. It was such a great way to give back to the community—COVID-safe, an easy contribution to ask for, and such a meaningful cause. All it took was a little start up effort, a box at the front door, and the rest took care of itself! We were thrilled to be able to help.”
If you would like to help out in a similar way, check out our dedicated SignUpGenius for this purpose (or purchase books off-list). If you have any questions, or just need our shipping address, email email@example.com. Thanks again to Susannah and her crew!
ADDITIONAL WAYS TO HELP SNGA:
HOLD A FACEBOOK FUNDRAISER
“Can’t thank you enough for the gifts for my little girl. I couldn’t afford to buy her anything for her birthday which made me sad. She was so happy!”
Receiving notes like this is part of what keeps our donors and volunteers so motivated to give back to our community. You can help us as well by holding a Facebook birthday or other fundraiser. Thanks to Tracy and Betsy, who did so for their birthdays.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE THROUGH RECURRING DONATIONS
If you donate to Simple Needs GA (or would like to!), we’d love it if you would consider making your donation automatically recur each month and become a member of Simply Caring! Just go to SimpleNeedsGA.org, click one of the “donate” buttons and then check “make this donation recurring (monthly).” You can use your credit card or a PayPal account for these donations. Another option: signing up for a PayPal Giving Fund account. PayPal Giving Fund charges no fees to enrolled charities, so all of your donations will go to SNGA!
Of course, you could also schedule a check monthly via your bank account – or just mail a monthly check to:
Simple Needs GA
P.O. Box 670265
Marietta, GA 30066
AUTO-DONATE VIA AMAZON SMILE!
Amazon Smile allows you to support SNGA even as you shop on your iPad or phone: Just go to smile.amazon.com, sign up for the program and choose Simple Needs GA from the list. After that, AmazonSmile will donate to SNGA each time you make a purchase! This can really add up over time. Just remember to go to the smile.amazon.com portal before you do your shopping!
THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT OF PEOPLE IN NEED!