Don’t let the name fool you. These happening ladies are not all “housewives”. They are married, single, divorced, widowed, with children, without children, older, younger, stay at home moms, and working moms. They are all ages, all races and all professions. They all share one thing in common: they want to better the world around us and to help set a positive example for the next generation. They encourage any and all individuals who want to make a difference in their community to join their efforts. Who are they?
We’re often overwhelmed by the number of amazing people that call themselves Delawareans! A team of those amazing people are The Real Charitable Housewives(RCH) of Delaware. The RCH originated in Wilmington, Delaware, by founder Jill Fella, as a charitable organization determined to counteract the stereotype of women who seemed to value money and material wealth over working for the greater good. A driven group of dedicated women working together to help raise awareness in the LOCAL community for charitable and non-profit organizations. The RCH take pride in helping to improve our communities for the next generation and to be real life examples of kindness and compassion – working for the greater good. RCH plans, organizes and promotes events for LOCAL charities, to assist in fundraising, volunteering or the collection of goods. Now 5 chapters strong, the RCH are unstoppable and Making IT Happen around North Delaware and beyond.
North DelaWHERE Happening(NDH) had the sincere pleasure to interview with RCH Organization Founder, Chapter President and fellow North Delawarean, Jill Fella.
NDH – How many RCH Delaware members do you have?
RCHD – We have 7 dedicated committee members – Jennifer Harrison, Laurie Seidle, Lynda Neef, Nicole Pulliam, Patti Strecker, Amber Shader and myself, Jill Fella. Each member helps to ultimately help plan events and volunteer opportunities throughout the year. For the Mom Prom, we have 14 members since it’s much more comprehensive and complex. The number of volunteers definitely varies depending on what we are supporting around Delaware each month. We have had volunteer efforts at the Food Bank, for example, with over 30 volunteers supporting over two nights and we’ve had as few as two members collect donations for school supplies outside of Walmart. It’s not about quantity, it’s quality.
NDH – How many RCH Delaware members are from North Delaware?
RCHD – Most of our committee members are located in New Castle County and most of our active, volunteering members have been from NCC and Kent counties. We have planned a few events downstate and would like to add more, if volunteers are interested!(hint, hint)
NDH – What has been your biggest accomplishment yet?
RCHD – I would like to say that our “Totally 80′s Mom Prom” in 2012 and our “Fabulous Fifties Mom Prom” in 2013 (both to benefit the Andrew McDonough B+ Foundation) were our biggest accomplishments thus far. They are both a lot of work to plan and require great team efforts. A lot of blood, sweat and tears but really great, successful nights for charity and we accomplished getting nearly 95% of it all donated both times. Those two proms raised well over $13,000 to the foundation and we are hoping to raise more with next year’s prom. Also, another big sense of accomplishment comes from seeing children attend volunteer activities or having a hand in donating goods or collecting items…that’s genuinely what this is all about. It’s an honor to include the next generation in community service. I think volunteering instills a great sense of accomplishment within them and also show them that yes, you are little and young, but you too can make a difference!
NDH – What is your biggest challenge?
RCHD –Definitely spreading the word regarding volunteer opportunities and events. Moreso with everyone’s busy schedule and hectic lives, our volunteers would like to help out more and attend volunteer efforts, but sometimes it just doesn’t work out. Everyone puts forth their best.
NDH – How do you make IT all happen – how are you networking to build the RCH network?
RCHD – We are very appreciative and grateful for any and all help and truly respect the connections we have made through our service in the community – most definitely with online social networking through Facebook and Twitter. We do the very best we can in what time and resources we have available.
NDH – What’s been the biggest ah-ha moment you had about the connections within Delaware – the 2 degrees of separation here?
RCHD – Everyone seems to know everyone else in this small wonder state which really brings a sense of people caring for one another. So many are very willing to help where they can…individuals and businesses alike! Empowering!
RCHD – We welcome everyone regardless of whether they are a housewife or not. The name of the organization was just a nod to the reality shows – we definitely are not all housewives. Actually, those who volunteer most work full-time as do many of the planning committee members! We welcome anyone who wants to help no matter what profession or how much they make. We just want people involved in helping their communities and to enjoy giving a few hours of their time to great causes!
RCHD – Even while we were planning our “Fabulous Fifties Mom Prom”, we were still plugging away looking for new volunteer opportunities. We are looking forward to helping with yard work and gardening at Little Sisters of the Poor in Newark this Saturday morning(June 22nd), in fact. In July, we have a large team from our Delaware and South East, PA chapters running/walking “The Color Run” in Philly. Also in July, we will be helping out at the Delaware Shakespeare Festival. Also on the list for 2013 — we plan to work with the Tri-State Bird Rescue group, hold another shoe drive for Shoes 2 Share, and then are researching getting involved in events supporting the fight against and awareness of Ovarian Cancer, Childhood Obesity and/or Bullying Prevention. Can’t believe our 2013 calendar is almost full!
The Real Charitable Housewives (RCH) began in Wilmington, Delaware, as a charitable organization determined to counteract the stereotype of women who seemed to value money and material wealth over working for the greater good.
The founder, Jill Fella, felt that, if given the opportunity, the “housewives” she knew could surely reverse this stereotype. Delaware is a small state, but it has a huge heart. Jill, a native Pennsylvanian, moved to the First State in 2001 and realized that everyone in the state is connected somehow. Because of this, there is a strong sense of responsibility for each other, and so The Real Charitable Housewives of Delaware was born.
In January 2011, the first sister chapter was formed in Orlando, Florida and since then the RCH have expanded to Seattle, Washington; Anchorage, Alaska; and Southeastern, Pennsylvania.
Get INvolved and help RCHD keep Makin’ IT Happen!