Tag Archives: Fundraising

“No room in the Inn” takes on another meaning

This has been a heart breaking week so far for The Sparrow’s Nest.

I’ve had numerous calls from young girls who were pregnant or parenting sweet little babies and had no place to go. I had another call from a caseworker still looking for a safe place for his 16 year old client and her 4 month old baby. I looked into the eye of a mother of 13 year old girl who has struggled for months with so many self destructive behaviors. The family just needed a moment of peace.

However, the stark reality is the 3-4 teen shelters in the entire St. Louis metro are full. They’ve started waiting lists again. “No room in the Inn” has taken on another meaning during this holiday season. We’ve started referring girls out of the area. Some are willing to leave what they know. Others can’t imagine being away from their familiar surroundings during this hard time in their lives. Things look pretty bleak.

But, you are hope. And you can make space for even more hope.

Your prayers can help bring light to these dark places.

Your creativity can bring answers to these problems.

Your generosity can help Build The Nest

for a safe and secure place for these innocent babies and their young mothers.

We need champions who will give sacrificially for such a time as this. Please donate whatever you can, $1, $10, $20, $100.

Let’s make space for hope together.




You’ve got a freakin’ gold mine!

The average household has $90 in change laying around

We hear a lot of people telling us that they really can’t afford to donate much to The Sparrow’s Nest right now. Times are tough. And believe me. We get that! It’s kinda the reason we’re coming into existence. However, Coinstar® reminds us that there is forgotten money hiding in our homes.  The average American household has a coin stash of  about $90 just waiting to be put to good use. Like helping the fund a home for teens and their precious little babies.

So if you thought you couldn’t give anything, or first thought at most you could only give $25 or so start looking around your house.

To mine for money in your house, follow these steps from the Live on Cash Blog:

  1. Prospect in the most obvious spots first:  pants pockets, handbags, backpacks, coat pockets, etc.
  2. Look for “piggy” and other types of coin banks.  Half of American families keep change in a coin bank of some type.
  3. Check behind chests-of-drawers and cabinets, under beds, refrigerators, dressers, and nightstands, any place where coins might end up after falling on the floor.  28% of the time you will find coins in random locations such as these.
  4. Search out cups, mugs, jars, and other containers.  71% of Americans keep their coins in receptacles of some type.
  5. Explore beneath the cushions and in the cracks of upholstered furniture.  There is a 1 in 5 chance you will find coins there.
  6. Hunt through your washer and dryer.  36% of coins have been “laundered”.
  7. Rummage through drawers.  A third of American families keep coins in drawers.
  8. Comb through your car, especially the glove compartment, under the seats, the cracks within and between seats, and under floor mats.

You don’t even need to count it. Put your stash in a coffee can, a ziploc bag, or chinese food container. We’ll take it to the bank and then issue you a tax-ductible receipt.

And you thought you couldn’t afford to donate to The Sparrow’s Nest this year.:)

After you go on your coin scavenger hunt, let us know the most unusual place you found money. What was the highest amount you found?

Happy Mining!

Knock! Knock!

Lot of houses for sale due to mortgage crisis,...

Image via Wikipedia

You can help The Sparrow’s Nest buy ME! I’m an empty house just waiting to become a home for teen moms who need a safe place to stay!



Hi there!

I have a dream.

I have a dream that one day soon, my bedrooms will be filled with young women who need a safe place to stay as they wait for their babies to be born. In my kitchen, loving adults will sit around the table with teen moms, helping them with schoolwork and teaching them how to properly care for their little ones. My family room will be filled with warmth and laughter as these young women find the support and encouragement they need to make positive choices for themselves and their babies.

I suppose I could be bought by someone else. Maybe an average family looking for more space, or a bachelor planning to fix me up and sell me for a profit. But deep in my foundation, I know I was built for something more.

You are the key to unlocking the greatness that exists behind these walls.

Right now, I’m sitting here vacant, doing nothing. Once in a while, I see a driver slow down, squint at my “For Sale” sign, and then keep on going. But that’s OK, because I’m waiting to become something amazing: the home of The Sparrow’s Nest.

And when my doors open next year, I’ll be a maternity home for teen moms in  St. Charles County. It’s enough to make my shingles tingle with pride!

Word around the neighborhood is that you’re already a supporter of The Sparrow’s Nest. That’s fantastic! But I’m going to need some more help if I’m going to be ready to take care of these moms and their babies by next summer.

By returning these with your tax-deductible donation to The Sparrow’s Nest Maternity Home—or by making a secure online contribution at http://www.thesparrowsneststl.org—you will get me one step closer to making my dream come true.

You can help TODAY by sponsoring

A coat of paint= $25

A washer and dryer (gotta keep those little onesies clean)= $1000

An entire bedroom= $25,000

 But the most important thing is for you to do what you can—NOW. Right now these young ladies have nowhere else to go . . . and I’m just sitting here empty.

Yours truly,

Future Home of The Sparrow’s Nest

Super Easy Way to Help Build The Nest

Image representing GoodSearch as depicted in C...

Image via CrunchBase

Here’s an easy way to raise money for The Sparrow’s Nest. Just start using Yahoo! powered GoodSearch.com as your search engine and they’ll donate about a penny to us every time you do a search!

In addition, do all of your shopping through their online shopping mall, GoodShop.com, where you can shop at more than 2,400 top online retailers and a percentage of your purchases will go to The Sparrow’s Nest. You pay the same price as you normally would, but after you choose The Sparrow’s Nest as your cause a donation goes to us!

You can also enroll in the GoodDining program. Eat at over 10,000 participating restaurants nationwide and you can earn up to 6% of every dollar spent on the meal as a donation for The Sparrow’s Nest.

Here’s the web site — http://www.goodsearch.com. You can also read about GoodSearch in the NY Times, Oprah Magazine, CNN, ABC News and the Wall Street Journal.

Does Your Phone Ring Non Stop?


Image by tj scenes via Flickr

Does your phone seem to ring


Are you like me and sometimes you just hate to answer the phone? Maybe you are like me and Itʼs not because you donʼt like talking to your friends and family, or because you are avoiding telemarketers trying to convince you to change your cable service. Itʼs because too often, the person on the other end of the line is in dire need of help–and at the moment, the help they need doesnʼt exist.

You see, because of my involvement as a parent educator, pregnancy counselor and church youth volunteer, I frequently receive calls like these:

* Father of a 15-year-old pregnant girl called saying… He didnʼt want to kick her out of the house; he simply wanted to provide her with the opportunity she needed to get her life back on a positive track. After dozens of calls, it seemed that his only option was to send her far away from St. Charles.

* A 16 year old called explaining… she was three months pregnant and her parents had kicked her out. None of her friendsʼ families were willing to take her in, and she had nowhere else to go. She asked me what she should do next.

These are just a tiny reflection of the dozens of similar stories Iʼve heard over the phone these last few years. My heart ached as I shared in the painful reality of each caller. Finally, I decided that this situation had to change–and the idea for The Sparrowʼs Nest Maternity Home in St. Charles, Missouri was hatched.

Plans are underway to open the doors of The Sparrowʼs Nest Maternity Home in  2012. Weʼve made a good start toward raising the initial funding it will take to begin operations and to start making a difference, but we are relying on your help for this dream to take flight.

Right now, we need our supporters to help us “Build the Nest” so together we can start building HOPE. We are looking for lease-to-own houses in north St. Charles with enough space to house up to eight teen mothers and their babies, as well as our staff.

To do this will require every single person reading this letter to take action to raise our first goal of $100,000 by December 31, 2011. We need:

100 people to donate $1000

or 200 people to give $500

or 400 people to give $250

or 2000 people to give $50.

Will you answer this call?

The Sparrowʼs Nest is a registered 501(c)3 organization, and all donations are tax- deductible. You can mail your donation to The Sparrow’s Nest, ATTN: Treasurer, 911 Hampshire Heath Dr, O’Fallon, MO 63368, or if itʼs more convenient, you can make a secure online contribution by hitting the donate button at http://www.thesparrowsneststl.org.

What matters most is that you do it today. Each year in our area, dozens of homeless young women and their unborn babies find themselves in urgent need of shelter and support, and they are depending on you to help them find it.

Meanwhile, my phone hasnʼt stopped ringing.

-Carissa Figgins


Fa La La La La


Image by Monica's Dad via Flickr

Did I seriously just hear a bell ringer? Is it just me or is anyone else in denial that the holidays are upon us? Does anyone else find it just a bit disconcerting for retailers to have beach toys, Halloween candy, and Christmas decorations displayed all together at the same time in their seasonal department?

Hopefully you’ve turned the calendar page and marked down all the Sparrow events for the rest of this year but I’d also like you to start looking ahead with us. We have less than 12 months to go for the launch of The Sparrow’s Nest. We are still on track to open in July 2012 but we need you to help us stay the course.

This makes me wonder if Grandma really needs another bottle of lotion. Or does Aunt Sally really another frame or coffee cup. Doesn’t Uncle Bob have enough sweaters?

As you’re starting to think about your holiday giving consider making a considerable donation of $25, $50, or $100 in honor of your special someone. We’ll make sure they are notified of your gift with a special Christmas card.

Gifts made represent a gift to the entire mission of The Sparrow’s Nest. To help get the doors open for our Build The Nest project we use your gifts where they can do the most good by pooling them with the gifts of others to help Build The Nest. And, because you are helping The Sparrow’s Nest save unborn babies and empower young mothers, your gift is tax deductible.

Maybe we don’t need corporate money after all

Bald Eagle

Image via Wikipedia

My family just returned from a great Florida vacation. The weather was perfect for spending every moment we could outside. We did the usual tourist items, but our most memorable and impressionable times were in the Great Outdoors either on the beach or the wetlands.

One of these times was on an air boat tour of the protected wetlands just outside Cocoa, Florida. The captain of our boat would troll along and then suddenly gun the boat towards animals and birds he saw off in the distance. We saw countless alligators up close and personal, egrets, blue herons, all in their natural habitats. Towards the end of the 60 minute tour the captain was turning the boat back towards the docks when he caught sight of an eagle sitting on top of a single palm tree in the middle of the wetlands. We jetted across the water and then just as quickly, slowed up so not to disturb this incredible bird of prey. The eagle had other plans and suddenly took off into the sky pumping those majestic wings. The captain of the boat decided to chase after the eagle knowing full well with all that strength and might the eagle would leave us behind. The ride and the sight was exhilarating and one I will not soon forget.

The Sparrow’s Nest got left behind on the Monsanto Grow St. Louis Contest. We made a good run at it and it was because of your effort and perseverance that we finished in the top 25 of over 300 entries. We can’t thank you enough for the 50,000+ votes we received. The exposure of our mission was great! It wasn’t money we were counting on but it would have been REALLY nice to have at least 5000 more dollars in our little nest egg. We knew it was a long shot because we really are  a little fish in a sea of much bigger fish.

But what I’m wondering is if you will be like that eagle, and not so much leave us behind this time, but soar high and strong and mighty, and give that $5000 to help Build The Nest on our own. Maybe we don’t need some big corporation’s money. Maybe we just need people like you willing to help us take flight and transform those 50,000 votes to $50,000?

Can you give $100, $200, or $1000 to help Build The Nest? Whatever you can give would be greatly appreciated. You can give on our secure site http://www.thesparrowsneststl.org or mail it to:

The Sparrow’s Nest Maternity Home

ATTN: Treasurer

911 Hampshire Heath Dr.

O’Fallon, MO 63368

but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31