Traverse City Record-Eagle

November 11, 2013

Northern Notes: NWS wins big

Local columnist

— They did it!

Not only did the National Writers Series meet its fundraising goal for “The Great Write Off,” they exceeded it.

“The Great Write Off” is a month-long annual fundraiser that supports literary nonprofit organizations across Michigan. The National Writers Series set its sights at raising $5,000 in 30 days. A generous donor agreed to match all funds donated up to the $5,000 goal, which meant that if the NWS raised $5,000 they would end the campaign with a total of $10,000.

All the funds raised would help support programs like Front Street Writers and the National Writers Series scholarship fund, which awards $2,500 to three college-bound students each year. Front Street Writers is a tuition-free creative writing program for area high school juniors and seniors.

With less than one day left in the campaign, the NWS faced the daunting task of still having to raise $2,415 in order to reach its goal. An email went out asking for help to raise the remaining funds. That’s when things got interesting.

The campaign was still shy of its goal by the end of the campaign, but NWS received a promise from a couple to donate whatever amount was still needed. That ensured that NWS would meet the $5,000 match. Then, another individual pledged a second match of $5,000. Suddenly donor contributions were tripled. The cherry on top was a promise of $1,000 from another donor if NWS met its goal.

When all these contributions were combined with the original contributions from donors who made the initial $5,000 match, the total raised was $16,100.

“On behalf of everyone at the Writers Series of Traverse City, we want to extend a very heartfelt thank-you,” wrote NWS Co-founder Doug Stanton and NWS Executive Director Jill Tewsley.


Breast Cancer Awareness Month is over, but Northwood Animal Hospital’s Jen Klabunde, DVM, believes breast cancer awareness should be important all year.

In October, the animal hospital’s front lawn turned from green to bright pink and a sign highlighted the importance of breast cancer awareness. Dr. Klabunde also sponsors and participates in the “Relay for Life,” “Bark for Life” and “Bras for a Cause,” and believes in the importance of taking action as a community to support those fighting cancer. She also stresses the important role companion animals can play in recovery.

“Fighting cancer takes a huge amount of support and our companion animals provide us with an exceptional level of support,” Dr. Klabunde said. “(In October) especially, I really wanted our community to come together and celebrate the bonds of love, compassion and support that can help a breast cancer survivor thrive and recover.”