I AM ONE OF THE LUCKY ONES.
Unfortunately, many others were not so lucky. People have lost their lives, homes, livelihoods, business, family members, friends, etc. I thank God everyday I am alive. I am grateful to be alive but I am suffering from survivor guilt and I feel like I am not doing enough to help.
I decided to do what I do best--tutor, teach and provide academic support to students. It is hard enough to start a new school year(which is just in a few short weeks). I can't even imagine these children who have lost parents, family, homes, etc. or are suffering from the emotional trauma trying to excel in school.
I own a business, Tutoring By Courtney, and I want to offer free services to these children. Obviously, I personally cannot tutor all of these children so I have teacher friends willing to help me with this need(for free). If the free services are not enough, then I would pay for these needs with the funds(or from my business). The money will also be used for any academic supplies that students will need.
My business, and me personally, will not receive any financial gain from this(I am donating my own services and money).
I come from a family of educators(Mom, Dad, me-we have all made our careers out of educating children) and education is our passion. I have always helped others, volunteered and donated to charity. This time, I am asking for assistance for a cause that is so close to my heart.
I thank God that I am alive and I would just like to share this story(if my faith offends you, just ignore:) ) I recently started attending Catholic mass again on a regular basis and felt a renewed faith in God. The day before the flood, my friend(who saved a boy from the flood) called me and asked me for mass recommendations. He attended mass and confession(which he had not done in years) and said he felt wonderful. Later that day, I spoke to him of a necklace that I had received as a graduation present from University of Notre Dame(with Mother Mary on the dome). This necklace is a treasured keepsake that I keep in my jewelry box and do not wear. The night of the flood, I put on the necklace for the first time in 16 years. I prayed on that necklace for the 2+ hours we were stranded.
After the flood, I have been suffering from PTSD(not eating, sleeping, panic attacks, extreme anxiety). A week after the flood, I was sitting on the beach(I had to leave my hometown for a few days) praying and trying to stop a panic attack. I heard church bells and walked up the street and found a Catholic church. During the service(in a town 3 hours from my hometown), we prayed for the victims of the flood. I couldn't stop crying about my guilt for surviving. I prayed and suddenly I felt a sense of peace and realized that I should do what I do best, provide academic support. I came up with this plan. After mass, I spoke to two priests and again felt a sense of peace that I had not felt since the flood. So, that's my journey so far
PLEASE donate, SHARE, send good thoughts/prayers or just be grateful :)
Thanks so much,