By: Caroleann Gallagher
The Daisie Foundation was founded in honor of Daisie Robinson, a single mother, working two jobs and raising eight children. A true Southern Belle, Daisie believed wholeheartedly in the power of community. She took it upon herself to teach, inspire and challenge other women to become the best versions of themselves. She was known throughout her life for spreading joy and kindness, many times unexpectedly, and in a testament to her mission The Daisie Foundation was founded to carry her light and her mission forward. By partnering with various organizations to spread joy and kindness to deserving women and children throughout the country, Daisie’s mission lives on.
This past December, the WBAI partnered with The Daisie Foundation to spread holiday magic to a deserving Chicago Public School on the South Side of the City. The initiative takes months of planning and is a complete surprise to teachers and staff, and for one day the school is transformed into a magical holiday wonderland with music and dancing, presents and cheer and it truly is a site to behold.
Caroleann Gallagher, WBAI Director, wrote on the impact that this event had on not only the children and school staff, but on her as well:
“This was my second year representing the WBAI and assisting and attending the Daisie Foundation Holiday Magic Event. The event takes months and months of planning and a huge amount of support and generosity to make it happen. The entire day and all the surprises that the children and teachers receive are a complete surprise to everyone at the school except the Principal. To say that I was the lucky one to be able to be a part of this day would be an understatement. It truly was one of the highlights of my year.
I was there to help and give my time, but truth be told, it was the brilliant children of this School who helped me – they helped me remember the true meaning of the Holidays and that giving your time, a smile, a hug, a high five, a dance, just anything, is what it is all about. The gratitude and happiness shown by the kids and the school staff, for this amazing day, will stay with me forever. I will never miss this event if I can help it and it is already in my calendar for next year. Please come to this event next year – I promise you; you will not regret it.”
The absolute joy and happiness this event brought to my heart is beyond words. I cannot explain how wonderful this event, The Daisie Foundation and the many many volunteers and sponsors who make it happen, are. The remainder of my words go to the children of Deneen Elementary School – just look at those happy, beautiful faces -they absolutely stole my heart and are simply put – pure joy!
The WBAI was honored to partner with The Daisie Foundation again this month, where hundreds of Chicago Mothers, military wives, cancer survivors and single parents were honored with their first ever makeover. While a makeover serves to remind mothers of their beauty inside and out, this event also helps women find and reclaim their inner strength. Whether it’s for a first job interview, a LinkedIn profile or just their next community or family event, the makeovers encourage women to inspire others and create a positive lasting impact.
This article was originally published in the WBAI Spring 2023 Newsletter on page 48.