Annual Fund / Membership 2013 Donor Profiles
HARC’s 2013 Annual Fund/Membership Campaign is underway and HARC is running a series of Annual Fund donor profiles to celebrate the generosity of its donors. Please read about the featured donors below as they were asked, “Why do you support HARC’s 2013 Annual Fund/Membership campaign?
Neale & Carol Hauss
Longtime HARC donors, Carol & Neale Hauss (affectionately known at HARC as CJ and Buzz) support HARC’s Annual Fund campaign every year.
The couple first became involved with HARC while Carol was Director of Family Support Services at United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) - HARC and UCP shared clients and services. Neale is the owner of HP Kopplemann, Inc., a Hartford based newspaper distributor, and at the time, he was interested in making HP Kopplemann a worksite for a job-coached workgroup. Based on her relationship with HARC, Carol used her contacts to connect her husband and HARC. A short time later, HP Kopplemann became one of the first worksites for a number of agencies serving people with disabilities - HARC was one.
Over time, the couple got to know the HARC work crew, other HARC staff and our programs. The couple’s daughter even became involved, volunteering at Camp Bulova, HARC’s Saturday recreation program, when she was in high school. Through their experiences, one thing became obvious and it’s the reason why Carol and Neale support HARC today: HARC does good work.
Carol explains: “HARC may not be unique in its commitment to preserving the dignity of a vulnerable population. But it is unique in going that step further, finding innovative ways to build an inclusive community that draws on the talents and contributions of all.”
Pamela & Peter Sobering, HARC Family
Longtime members of the HARC Family, the Soberings support HARC's Annual Fund Campaign each year.
The Sobering Family, including Jordan, HARC participant, third from right.
"Peter and I contribute to HARC’s Annual Fund/Membership Campaign simply because of all the wonderful services HARC has provided for our daughter Jordan. Because of HARC, Jordan lives in a beautiful group home where they provide support and socialization as well as the job she has held at CIGNA for the past 10 years.
Maggie and Gene Grayson
Gene and Maggie Grayson have supported HARC’s Annual Fund Membership campaign for many years and 2013 is no exception.
Gene became involved with children who had intellectual disability 30 years ago while coaching youth sports in Wethersfield. A son’s friend had muscular dystrophy and his father wanted him to have a meaningful and inclusive sports experience. Phone calls were made and a new team was formed for Wethersfield children with disabilities, including some HARC participants. Gene became a longtime volunteer umpire and coach and grew to know many of the players and their families.
Competing against teams from neighboring towns, Gene fondly remembers that despite coaching in the league for nine years, there wasn’t a single out recorded. “No matter how many players each team had, everyone got a chance to bat and play.”
The Grayson family has since moved but their commitment to people with intellectual disability remains. An important recollection from his volunteer days was how significant it was to the player’s families to get a break for a few care-free hours. HARC’s Respite Program provides this service to HARC families today.
“Among the charities that my wife and I support each year, we choose one to give a significant amount to so we can make a real difference. We always choose HARC – it does such great work.”
Seth Fierston, HARC board member
West Hartford resident and HARC board member Seth Fierston began working with HARC 18 years ago helping lead the search for an investment advisor as HARC’s endowment fund was growing. Inspired by the organization’s vision for serving people with intellectual disability and their families, Seth continued volunteering at HARC, joining the administrative services committee and eventually the HARC board, acting as board chair from 2007-10.
Seth supports HARC’s Annual Fund because he appreciates first hand how difficult it is to do the good work that HARC does despite continuous budget cutbacks and lack of growth from government funding.
“Every year HARC counts on annual fund donations to maintain the current level of services and the client’s quality of life. Programs such as respite, recreation and the Bulova Center would not be possible without the generosity of HARC’s supporters”