It was a long shot when Project Home Indy Executive Director Sarah Nielsen sent a personal e-mail to best-selling author and popular blogger Glennon Melton, asking her to speak at the group’s May 5 fundraiser.
After all, Melton has a national following and busy schedule, and a small non-profit serving pregnant homeless teens was not on her radar.
“I told her we couldn’t pay her speaker’s fee. We couldn’t even cover her airfare or hotel,” Nielsen said.
Melton, whose parenting blog, Momastery, has more than 60,000 Facebook likes and a devoted readership, still said yes. Then she did one better. She blogged about Project Home Indy.
“I want to come hold babies and hug warrior mamas and tell them my story and hear theirs,” she wrote. “And yours. And dance on my head or sing horribly or make speeches or whatever else we need to do to raise money for this beautiful home. I’ll pay my own way — I want you to save every penny for the lovies.”
Immediately after her post, small donations from people all over the country started to arrive. Boxes from Amazon.com, filled with necessities like diapers, arrived at PHI’s front door. Nielsen fielded calls from people wanting to volunteer.
The “Boutiques and Brunch Benefit” fundraiser will run from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. May 5 at The Madame Walker Theater, 617 Indiana Ave., Indianapolis. Presented by Managed Health Services (MHS), the annual fundraising event is meant to honor and pamper special women — mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, and friends who are both mentors and role models.
Individual tickets and table packages are on sale now for the event. It includes a brunch, the opportunity to shop for items from Indianapolis boutiques, and hear Melton’s inspiring story. Her lecture begins at 2 p.m.