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Book details
  • SubGenre:General
  • Language:English
  • Pages:112
  • Paperback ISBN:9781667822792

Downsize for Diversity

How We Raised $122,000 with a Pickup Truck and a Little Help from Our Friends

by Joanna Schmergel and Marika Hamilton

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This is the story in words and pictures of how a handful of volunteers began collecting and selling donated estate sale items, learning as they went, and eventually raising enough money for an endowment to help fund their town's METCO activities year in and year out. The Lincoln METCO Coordinating Committee shows that anyone can raise money — if they're just willing to do a little heavy lifting!

How did a bunch of volunteers with no fundraising or estate sales experience manage to raise $122,000 for the METCO program in Lincoln, Mass.? This book tells the story of how they started out selling old dolls no one wanted any more and wound up collecting, hauling and selling thousands of dollars worth of antique artwork, furniture, rugs, and many other items donated by downsizing homeowners all over eastern Massachusetts. This book is for anyone who wants to raise money for METCO (or any other cause) while meeting people, learning how to evaluate donated art and furniture, advertise it for sale, create and operate a nonprofit, etc. Co-author Joanna Schmergel, Lincoln MCC's fundraising chair, will even come speak to your METCO group for free and tell you everything they learned along the way — just email DownsizeForDiversity@gmail.com.

About the author

Joanna Schmergel lives on traditional, unceded territory of the Wampanoag/Massachuset Nation to the East, the Pennacook/Pawtucket Nation to the North and the Nipmuc Nation to the West, known today as Lincoln, Mass., with her husband Greg and children Gage, 9, and Aurora, 8. Joanna studied English and liberal arts at Norwich University. She served as an Army Officer in the 82d Airborne Division after college and later earned her MBA at Simmons College. She also worked in operations management at the Raytheon Co. In addition to driving around in Big Bertha earning money for the Lincoln METCO Coordinating Committee, Joanna enjoys volunteering weekly at Lovelane Special Needs Horseback Riding in Lincoln, long walks, big dogs, international travel, and most of all, her family.

Marika Sjuan Hamilton (she/her/hers) identifies as a Black woman and currently resides with her family on traditional territory of the Pawtucket and Pennacook people, known today for Shawsheen River, in Billerica, MA. She serves as the AIDE (Antiracism, Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity) Coordinator and METCO Director for Lincoln Public Schools, where she collaborates with Joanna Schmergel and the rest of the METCO Coordinating Committee. Marika earned her bachelor's degree in business management from Simmons College and her master's in education interdisciplinary studies from Cambridge College. When she's away from work, her three heartbeats, Saige, Sydni, and Nolan, keep her on the go.

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