Mrs. Minnesota United States 2010, Wendi Russo, has assembled a dream team of the state’s pageant titleholders for this year’s Bowl for Kids’ Sake fundraiser. Dubbing themselves Queens for Kids, the group also includes Ava Beilke, America’s Perfect Miss 2010; Alexis Dierks, Minnesota’s Perfect Junior Teen 2010; Carolina Reyes, Miss Minnesota International 2010; and Jenna O’Rourke, Miss Teen Minnesota International 2010. For the past few months, the Queens have been raising money and awareness for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities through the online fundraising site, Firstgiving. And, come October 30th, the team will don their crowns and sashes as they celebrate their collective effort with an afternoon of bowling and prizes at AMF Southtown Lanes in Bloomington.
As an alumnae Big Sister, Wendi has a personal passion for youth mentoring in the Twin Cities, and she encourages everyone to join in helping BBBS reach this year’s $50,000 goal. She asks people to remember the adults who made a positive difference in their own childhoods when sharing about Big Brothers Big Sisters life-changing mentoring programs. The annual Bowl for Kids’ Sake event gives her a chance to give back. “Plus, it’s a fun event and a great way to be a part of something larger than yourself,” Wendi says. “Who doesn’t want to dress up in a Halloween Costume and bowl for a great cause?”
Queens for Kids have used several different strategies to make their fundraising efforts a success. They’ve even surpassed their original $1,000 goal. Team members have used social media including Facebook and Twitter to aid their campaign, and Wendi sent emails to friends and family members asking for donations instead of birthday presents this year. She says it’s important to keep in touch with teammates and exchange ideas on what works for raising money. She recommends personalizing emails and adding a personal story when possible to help people understand the impact mentoring can have in a child’s life.
There’s still time to get involved in this year’s Community Day Bowl for Kids’ Sake. To sign up, visit our website at www.bigstwincities.org.