Matt's graduation pic 2007

Matt's graduation pic 2007

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Off and Running!

As the president of The Matthew R. Row Scholarship Foundation and on behalf of the rest of our esteemed board members, we are so grateful for the opportunity to be involved in such a positive endeavor. I've been personally making lots of phone calls to the high school guidance departments in the WNY area and spreading the word about our new foundation! The timing is perfect, too - most seniors have completed their college applications and are now focused on scholarship applications.

We are so happy to be able to tell them that we are giving all high school seniors in WNY who have lost a parent or guardian the opportunity to apply for a $2,500 scholarship toward their college tuition, in which two will be awarded. We are equally as pleased to offer a paid registration to one of the Camp Widow events offered by Soaring Spirits International.

As a widow, I became involved with Soaring Spirits very early on in my journey seven years ago as a young widow and only parent to two very young children. This organization has helped me almost from day one with my loss in so many ways. I learned how valuable it is to connect with other people who have lost the person they were supposed to spend the rest of their life with. Being around other people who "get it" has been such an integral part of keeping me in a forward momentum. I also learned that giving back is just as healing as receiving the support I found. I had the opportunity to volunteer with them for a year, lead a workshop during one of the Camp events several years ago, and have made lifelong friends through it all. I've been inspired by the founder, Michele Neff Hernandez, and her amazing example of leadership, perseverance, grace and love in which she runs her organization. Many others who I have met through Soaring Spirits have also founded non-profit organizations designed to help adults as well as children who have been affected by loss. I've learned a lot from them (and continue to learn) about running an organization of this nature.  I am proud to be able to offer them as additional resources, as every bit helps when navigating a life so altered by a devastating loss.

As a mom, I'm able to show our impressionable children that it's possible to take something awful and turn it into something beautiful, and show my love for their daddy by helping so many others in his honor.

Although we're only able to offer scholarships to two students in WNY (as of right now until we are able to obtain more funding), anyone who learns about our foundation can find other means of support through the links to the right to either help themselves or pass along the information to someone else who might need it.

Andrea =)