The Upson-Lee High School Beta Club is undertaking a project that they hope will not only bring the community together, but give ULHS a more positive image and also make it one of the first high schools in the area to attempt a charity event of this type.
The Beta Club is sponsoring ‘Heart 2 Heart,’ a project in which local, state and national charities will benefit, while citizens and companies in Upson County will have mementos of loved ones to keep and cherish. ‘Heart 2 Heart’ will be a gigantic quilt made up of numerous squares of 3-foot by 3-foot cloth, donated by Tencate, that will be decorated to recognize someone, deceased or currently living, associated with the illnesses and issues that grip the heart of Upson County.
The individual pieces of the quilt will be turned in, and then put together and revealed on Matthews Field on March 6 for public viewing from 3:30-5:30 p.m. An aerial photo of the quilt will also be made at that time, and each individual or company who purchases a piece will received a photo of the completed quilt, and will receive their quilt square back.
Colton McRae, a member of the Beta Club, said the AIDS Foundation quilt done in Washington, DC, was the basis for their idea.
“I know Emory does one, lots of colleges and big corporations do this. They have memorial quilts and lay them out in some big area,” said McRae. “We realized there are no high schools that do it, at least around here. So we took that idea, tweaked it a little bit and made it our own so that it would fit the people of Upson County and their needs, and the community as a whole, instead of just a few people here and there. We are opening it up to everyone.
“We going to have 3-foot by 3-foot squares provided by Tencate. We want people to fill out an application for a square. The applications will be available at churches and sporting events, and in the newspaper. You fill out the application, write down what charity you want to help, and send us the application and $10. We will send the $10 to the charity of your choice. In return, you get the quilt square back, get to decorate it, and return it to us.”
Savannah Suarez, another member of the Beta Club, said the donations can go to any charity.
“Examples of some of the charities you might want to donate to are the American Cancer Society, St. Jude Children’s Hospital, the Wounded Warrior Project, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, SUPPORT, the Alzheimer’s Foundation, and there are many more,” said Suarez.
All the money raised from the sale of the quilt squares will go directly to charity. The Beta Club will not make any money off of this fund raising event, and in fact, will use some of its own money to set up the aerial photo and make copies of the photo.
“We didn’t want to seem like we’re making a profit off of this,” McRae said. “We’re trying to push Beta Club further into the community, because if you ask the normal person on the street, I doubt they will know what Upson-Lee Beta Club is. We want to change that. We want to get out and do more community events, work with Relay For Life, and things like that, to make an impact on our community and make things better for everyone else.
“Our sponsors, Ms. Watson and Ms. Parks, they wanted us to try to raise at least $20,000 this year for charity. Right now, we’ve raised about $1,500, so we are hoping this will be our big event to push us over that goal and keep rising up above it. That way, we can impact our little community and other places in some little way.”
Anyone wanting to take part in this endeavor can fill out the application found on Page 5A in today’s edition, or pick one up at local churches or high school sporting events. Fill the application out, return it with a check for $10 or more to the ULHS office, and pick up a quilt square. The squares will be different colors, and those picking up squares can choose the color they want. If someone wants to mail an application and check in and have the quilt square mailed back to them, there will be a $5 surcharge in addition to the $10 donation, and they will not be able to choose the color of the cloth.
You may purchase more than one quilt square, but each square must have its own application form. Checks can be made out to Upson-Lee High School, with the name of the charity on the check. A receipt will be provided with the name of the charity on it. Or, you can make the check out to the charity itself, and all the checks will be sent in at one time.
Applications and donations are due by Feb. 15. The completed quilt squares are due back at ULHS by Feb. 28
“We want to send the message out to everyone, and invite everyone to come out and see it, because we want it to be like Relay for Life – very emotional,” said McRae. “We want it to be a remembrance. We also want to get as much community support out of it as we can, in the hopes that next year people will tell their friends about it.”
For more information about Heart 2 Heart, contact Jessica Watson at email@example.com.