To the Editor:
The words “thank you” do not even begin to express the gratitude that all of us at Red Stocking feel for all of you who supported us this year! As with every group this year, we needed to reimagine many facets of our organization, given the pandemic — from fundraising to website development, to an online application process, and a completely different distribution process. It was an undertaking we were not sure we could accomplish, but with the enormous outpouring of support from our Island community near and far, we were able to make the magic happen once again for 336 Island children. For this, Red Stocking is eternally grateful.
Special thanks to Father Nagle and the Good Shepherd Parish for their generosity of spirit in enabling us once again to use the Parish Hall at St. Augustine’s Church, to Ronald Rappaport for his incredible fundraising efforts and making the establishment of the Kerry Alley Fund possible, to the Edgartown Police Department for holding its annual Stuff-A Bus for toys despite the pandemic, for the knitters and quilt makers who once again provided so many children with warm hats, mittens, scarves, and beautiful quilts, and to the Tisbury Police Department, as well as Flavia and Rodrigo from the Island Wide Youth Collaborative, for all their help on Distribution Day. Tilton’s Rental brought us tents that kept us warm and dry. A huge shout-out to Kathy O’Loughlin, who not only knit hats and mittens, but also made literally hundreds of face masks for the children. Thanks to Maria Mouzinho, Sarah Kuh, and Vanie Cortez of Vineyard Health Care Access for happily helping us every day to make sure we could make the magic happen.
In a year when we were not sure we would have many sponsors, sponsors sought out Red Stocking in a way that we have not seen before. While we missed our ability to welcome volunteers during the week of Red Stocking, we knew you were all there with us in spirit! We also thank Angela Prout from Shored Up Digital for her never-ending patience as we worked together on the creation of our first website. And, of course, our deepest thanks to our incomparable board of directors — we worked “together apart” this season, but our mission was the same as it always is: to provide a merry and magical Christmas for the children on Martha’s Vineyard who need us. The year 2020 was an unprecedented one, with many challenges, but it showed us, too, about the enduring spirit and generosity of this community. From the bottom of our hearts to the tips of our red stockings’ toes, we thank you all for keeping Red Stocking in your hearts.
Blessings upon you today and always.
Sandy Joyce and Susie Wallo, co-chairs
The Red Stocking Fund, Inc.