Bands of Hope, a non-profit organization that supports underprivileged single women with children, was founded in 2011 by two friends who dreamed of “giving back” to the community, in a way that was fun and exciting. They used their talent for entertaining and hosting to start a Charity event that would help bring their dream to fruition. Both Gilda Smith and Debra London, mothers and grandmothers, know first-hand the struggle that single mothers have in providing for their children in the most basic of ways. Within eight months of making their dream a bona fide commitment, they hosted their first Charity Christmas Gala on December of 2012. They quickly realized the need to “give back” was important to most of their friends and constituents and made their commitment “official,” receiving a 501 (c) (3) designation for the Bands of Hope effective May 2013. Immediately thereafter, a board of directors was installed to provide organized support and direction.
"The Organizations “Annual Charity Gala” benefits a deserving non-profit group with a platform that supports our purpose statement."
The primary mission is providing social support to single women with children and financial support, from contributions and tax-deductible donations, to non-profit 501 (c)(3) organizations that are organized and operated for charitable purposes. The activities of the Bands of Hope are directed toward empowering women to be successful through our volunteerism and mentoring efforts. Our fundraising events provide contributions to other non-profit groups whose mission is to educate, train and/or otherwise provide services to women and children in a way that improves the individual’s quality of life.
While Bands of Hope celebrated its seventh year of operations in 2018, it is even more evident that our vision was God given and he has blessed our efforts tremendously. “Our commitment to the community is strong and we are still enjoying the fun and excitement of the Gala. What’s not to be excited about; sharing your blessings with those less fortunate, getting all dressed up and celebrating with like-minded people during the most sacred time of the year – the time of giving. We prepare for this all year long” says Gilda. We’ve expanded programming to include an annual Teen Summit: #whataboutme to encourage, enlighten and educate teens between the ages of 13-19. We are thankful for the professional business community, clergy and law enforcement volunteers who donate their time and talents as facilitators.