4 mins read

Autism and Another Fund Raising Event

I like to keep active on the fund raising front. I try to volunteer two or three times a year.

One event I volunteer for every year is The Ed Asner Poker Tournament.

Ed Asner is a huge supporter of the autism community.

Additionally, he just began a non-profit called The Ed Asner Family Center. Their inaugural event was a summer camp for children on the spectrum.

What is it like to volunteer for a fund raising event?

It’s typically working behind-the-scenes.

You arrive early. Sometimes, you can even wear casual clothes. For this event, most of the volunteers changed into nice clothes right before the start of the event.

You check-in with the person in charge and you ask, “What can I do to help?”

And, they put you to work.

You could be dressing a stage or, in this case, the gaming floor. You could be setting up booths, moving stuff, making things, putting out decorations or food, pack gift bags, and many other “running around” chores. You’re there early for a reason, to help set up.

You could also get some training on a specific job for the night. I was working “reception” which mean checking in the non-celebrity players.

Then, when the event starts, you have a job to perform to help run the event. You’ve been assigned to your position, and you do your best to perform your job.

It may last all night, or may be one of many jobs.

After I finished at reception, I helped escort a few celebs.

At some point, the volunteers were allowed to go get some food (this is often the case, volunteers typically get fed).

Then, I was re-assigned to the gaming floor where I took re-bids.

For a brief time I assisted catering.

I helped clean and organize the green room.

When are you finished?

When things began to wind down, the clean-up begins.

And, you’re involved in that as well.

You stay as late as they need you to stay because you want to help this fund raiser go well, you want the event to make money.

You volunteered because you believe in a cause and you want to help that cause.

I have seen volunteers try to “disappear” after a while.

You don’t do that.

You stay and complete your job.

What do you get out of it?

As stated above, you helped raise money for a cause you believe in. In my case, it’s autism. I’ve worked with Ed and I want to help support his cause. He’s very passionate about helping other families.

In this case, you do get opportunities to meet some celebrities.

That’s a nice, little bonus.

Also in this case, you get to talk to other parents of children on the spectrum. You share ideas and support each other. You’re a member of this community.

An extra benefit from the celebs is to discover those celebs who really believe in your cause. One of them has a relative on the spectrum. Another one lives with a sibling with disabilities.

You learn that they’re real and that they’re there to lend their names and faces and job skills and talent to help this organization earn money…which goes to help the cause.

You make friends and bond with like-minded people.

And, you have fun. Feel good. Make a difference.

Autism and Another Fund Raising Event


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