On a crisp and beautiful sunny July morning at Baylands Park in Sunnyvale, volunteers and board members of The Grateful Garment Project (TGGP) joined together with more than 3,000 walkers, runners and yoga enthusiasts to raise a combined total of $106,000 toward worthy causes.
We were pleased and excited to be a part of this amazing fundraising and community awareness event called Sevathon for the (second? Third?) year in a row. We called our participation the Walk for Dignity @ Sevathon, asking our supporters to donate and raise money so that TGGP can continue its work to restore dignity to victims of sexual violence. All donations to the Walk for Dignity are going directly to that work.
This year we saw volunteer and donor participation increase 100 percent over 2014. Approximately 45 people joined us on Sunday, July 12, 2015, for the Walk for Dignity @ Sevathon, and even more individuals donated to TGGP through the fundraising website.
Sevathon itself is an annual event sponsored by the India Community Center of Milpitas. It includes a 5K or 10K walk or run, yoga Sun Salutations, and a community information fair. Translated, “seva” means, “service which is given without consideration of anything in return…[and] is regarded as the nature of goodness.” The event’s motto is “Unite. Serve. Celebrate.”
That Sunday certainly was a celebration of community and connection. Along with other participating nonprofits, we had a table where people could approach us and get information not only about TGGP, but also about how to get help in cases of sexual violence. Since Sevathon attracts a large South Indian audience, we came prepared with materials translated into the Hindi language. TGGP volunteers and board members did a great job interacting with visitors, helping them sign up for our newsletter, answering questions, accepting on-site donations, and handing out TGGP water bottles to our runners, walkers, and yogis.
If you missed the Walk for Dignity @ Sevathon it’s not too late to make a difference. You can still go to walk4dignity.org and donate, or visit the TGGP website’s donation page. While you’re there, check out our wish list, and take a look at the Grateful Giver page. We’re always looking for more Grateful Givers to make a reoccurring monthly donation toward supporting victims of sexual violence.
The 2015 Walk for Dignity @ Sevathon was a great success, and we are very thankful for the community and support we received. We are also really excited and looking forward to people signing up for next year!