After last year's PASS Summit I put my money where my mouth was and said I will do something this year to help the hurting and homeless in Seattle when I return. With less than a week to go until the start of the 2011 Summit it's time to make good on that promise.
A small group of volunteers and I have teamed up to help Seattle's Union Gospel Mission by collecting toiletries and other items that can be distributed to people in need. If you're like me you probably don't use the soap and shampoo in your hotel room. Instead of letting it sit there unused, we're asking you to take them with you to the convention center and donate them instead.
On Wednesday and Thursday you can drop your donations at Perpetual Technologies in booth #516 or SQLSentry in booth #512 (see the map here). The only requirement is that what you are donating has to be unopened in order for the Mission to accept it. There are more things that the Mission is looking for, so if you're feeling kind please don't stop at soap and shampoo. Some of their other immediate needs include:
- Tube socks
- Wrapped candy for Halloween
- Non-perishable food
- Hats, gloves, and hand warmers
- Razors & shaving cream
- Bottled water (individual size)
- Men's clothing (jeans and khakis particularly needed)
- Full-size shampoo & deodorant
- Toothbrushes & toothpaste
(Please remember that these need to be new, unopened items)
On Friday afternoon, with help from Seattle DBA Tom Roush, we will collect all of the items and deliver them to the Mission's downtown drop-off facility. From there the Mission will distribute the items to those in need via their many services, including their Search and Rescue Van that delivers items directly to people on the street who can use them. Note: The Union Gospel Mission is a Christian organization. Whatever your faith is (or isn't) shouldn't matter, though. What we're doing is simply trying to help people who are in need.
If for whatever reason you can't make it by the expo hall or forget to drop your donations off I will happily take them in person. I'm giving two sessions - Wednesday at 10:15 AM in Room 613-614 and Friday at 4:15 PM in Room 612 - plus I'll be all over the convention center throughout the week so you're bound to run into me at some point.
To all of my blogging and tweeting friends, I'd also appreciate it if you could help me by spreading the word (we're using the hashtag #SQLGive on Twitter).
THANK YOU and see you next week in Seattle!