BwoB: Help for Joplin, MO (and an update)

Bloggers without Borders (BwoB) is a blogger-based charity whose mission is to help people—bloggers and readers alike—by harnessing the good will of the blogging community. Its founders are Maggy Keet of ThreeManyCooks, Erika Pineda-Ghanny of The Ivory Hut, Julie Van Rosendaal of Dinner with Julie, and Aimee Wimbush-Bourque of Simple Bites. BwoB officially launches in July 2011.

UPDATE (May 27): It’s been about 36 hours since we launched Bloggers without Borders and our fundraising efforts for tornado victims, so we thought it was time for a progress report. As of midnight last night, we had raised over $1,200 for tornado victims across the United States. We can’t thank you enough for your quick and generous response.

After launching our Joplin campaign (original post below), another blogger with another need came to our attention. Kristan of Confessions of a Cookbook Queen lives 5 minutes from where another tornado hit in Arkansas. Fortunately, lives were spared, but her uncle—a father of four who doesn’t have much insurance—lost the family business when his flooring store was flattened. Family homes were also severely damaged and the overall loss is heartbreaking.

Bloggers without Borders Etna Denning Arkansas tornadoKristan’s uncle’s business. Photo by Kristan

When she learned of Kristan’s situation, Shelia, our Joplin recipient, generously offered to share half of the fundraising proceeds with Kristan’s community. “There is so much need that we definitely need to spread the love,” she said.

Kristan will distribute her share of the funds to the most urgent of situations in the Etna/Denning, AR community. She will also give us an update on her blog and share how the money was allotted. Truly, this is bloggers helping bloggers.

As we watch the news and the updates that are coming from these tornado-stricken areas, we feel such deep sadness for these people who have lost everything. Many of you expressed the same sentiment but we no longer feel helpless or hopeless, because together as bloggers, we are actually doing something to help in a real and meaningful way.

Our goal is to raise at least $2,000 so that we can give each blogger and her community $1,000. Please help us reach that goal by donating at the bottom of the post!

And for those who already have, thank you for your support. Your tweets and blog posts touch us, and they encourage us to forge ahead. There is much need, yes, but together we’re making a difference.

With gratitude,

Bloggers without Borders

Bloggers without Borders

Original Post (May 25)

Everyone around the country is deeply saddened by the tragedy that has taken place in Joplin, MO. And sadly, the tragedy has closely touched the life of our blogging friend, Sheila from Strawberry Cake. Her great aunt was killed when the nursing home she was living in was hit by the huge tornado that devastated the area. Other members of Sheila’s family were hospitalized with injuries and have damaged homes.

BwoB Help for Joplin MI
Photo Credit: Tom Uhlenbrock, Missouri Department of Natural Resources

We know there are many bloggers out there who would like to help the people of Joplin—but, of course, we are not there. We don’t know what the needs are. So we are raising money for Sheila’s family and the people of Joplin. Rather than give it to a large aid organization, we’re going to give it to Sheila so that she can distribute it to the people, organizations or local efforts that need help.

Once the money is collected and has been dispersed, Sheila will share with us what she did with the money—who it helped and how it helped—so that we can share that with you. You’ll know right where your money went.

So please give $1, $5 or as much as your financial situation allows. This money will go to people directly affected by the disaster—given to the people who need it by someone from our own community.

Thank you for your support,

Maggy, Erika, Julie and Aimee
Bloggers without Borders

Donate to Bloggers without Borders!

Want to spread the word? Want to help us raise money? E-mail us and we’ll send you the code for the BwoB badge and donate button. 

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites. Her first book, Brown Eggs and Jam Jars - Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites, was published in February 2015.

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  1. Aimee– I love the idea of Bloggers Without Borders. Thanks so much for posting this! I’m off to make my contribution now.

  2. So glad to see this! I just moved from Joplin last year and have several friend there that lost their homes. I’m thankful for the prayers and support that the country is giving them during this time!

  3. Great idea!

    The Red Cross (I am in St. Louis) is saying please don’t send food or other items. Just make a $ donation. They are running out of room to store everything they are receiving.

  4. Super proud of you ladies!

  5. What a great idea! Everyone is being told that donating money is the best way to help right now. The assisting agencies will then determine what the needs are and use the funds for that. As of right now, the perimeter of the city affected by the tornado is closed off to everyone to prevent looting and to make it less difficult for the search & rescue teams, and they are still trying to evaluate what is needed. They are running out of room to store donations, and people coming to Joplin with donations that are unaffiliated with a rescue/government agency are being turned away right now until they have some of it cleaned up.

  6. Jan @ Family Bites says

    Congratulations, Aimee. What a wonderful idea. I just donated!

  7. What a great idea. I am donating and following on Twitter.

  8. Thanks so much for sharing this idea and creating this opportunity to help!

  9. you guys are amazing….lots of love to you

  10. Our hearts and prayers go out to all that have been affected.

    Donating now…

    ( @downbythehearth )

  11. Cookbook Queen says

    Thanks again so much for including me on this. And thanks to Sheila for her generosity as well. My heart goes out to all the victims.

  12. Thank you so much for doing this!

  13. You are all amazing, your generosity is inspiring.

  14. It’s a great thing that BwoB is doing and just to add, another two lady bloggers, Ali Bee’s Bake Shop and JP Creatibles have started up a site to hold an on-line auction to help out Joplin, for those who are unable to donate funds to BwoB, they may be able to help by donating items to be auctioned.

    Much success with your endeavors.

  15. Love this wonderful idea, Aimee. Thanks for being a part of it!

  16. You and others behind BwoB are amazing! Although I live in Orange County, CA, I grew up in Eureka Springs, AR and have family in the Joplin area. We have donated a substantial amount to the Red Cross for disaster relief for Joplin and surrounding areas. Thank you for all your efforts.

  17. Great organization! I had applied to a couple of bankers without borders activities so I really do appreciate bloggers without borders.

  18. Hi there! I realize this is sort of off-topic however I needed to ask. Does running a well-established website such as yours take a lot of work? I’m completely new to running a blog but I do write in my diary everyday. I’d like to start a blog so I will be able to share my experience and thoughts online. Please let me know if you have any ideas or tips for brand new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!

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