Jewelry designing duo is raising funds for Route for the Brave and organization’s programs
Chandler-based independent jewelry designers for Origami Owl, Krysti and Kaylah Kauffmann have stepped up on her own accord to create a unique fundraiser for Helping Hands For Freedom (HHFF) that will help raise funds for the nonprofit in support of its Route for the Brave and all the programs offered by the organization.
Krysti Kauffmann initially found out about Helping Hands for Freedom through a charity event in which she personally offered an Origami Owl gift certificate. The winner of that gift certificate came to a jewelry bar event along with the office manager of Helping Hands for Freedom, Jaclyn Clark. “While they were there, Jaclyn told me a little bit about the organization and what they were doing,” explains Krysti Kauffmann. Immediately, Kauffmann, who is an Origami Owl independent jewelry designer, along with her daughter, Kaylah, decided on their own to offer to do a fundraiser for the military-based nonprofit.
Krysti Kauffmann is proud to be able to assist in using Origami Owl’s beautiful creations to assist the upcoming Route for the Brave. The walk across America route will start April 28, 2016 in Atlantic City and arrive in San Francisco on August 26, 2016. Along the way, Helping Hands for Freedom’s chairman of the board, David Roth and his friend and school teacher, Kevin Winton, will engage with communities all across America, participate in speaking engagements and welcome special guests as they raise awareness and funds for our military.In particular, they will bring awareness to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Kauffmann met with Clark and realized the scope of the Route for the Brave and was anxious to assist. “I offered to design a piece specifically for the walk. People who were walking could purchase and then all the proceeds from the locket or the dog tags would go directly back to Helping Hands for Freedom. We designed the piece together,” states Kauffman. “They also told me about ‘Save the 22’ and multiple things they are doing with Gold Star Wives and Gold Star Moms.” There is an Origami Owl team that will be participating in the Route for the Brave walk, too.” To purchase items to benefit Helping Hands for Freedom and its programs, visit this specific link:https://kaylahscreations.origamiowl.com/shop/party/269757. Any purchases made directly through that link will benefit Helping Hands for Freedom and will remain open through the duration of Route for the Brave. This special fundraiser is being offered directly by Krysti and Kaylah Kauffmann.
There is also a military connection for Kauffmann, which is part of the reason that Helping Hands for Freedom resonated with her as an organization she wanted to assist. “My father-in-law was in the Navy. His ship and crewmates were involved in Operation Crossroads and the atom bomb tests at Bikini Atoll,” she says. “My father was in the Air Force, too.”
The Origami Owl pieces made for Helping Hands for Freedom are resonating with women and men! “I thought that our lockets were going to be the most popular. But, the men are liking the dog tags we designed,” notes Kauffmann. Origami Owl as a company provided 50 engraved lockets which will be distributed at various Microsoft stores along the Route for the Brave walk to veterans that work in the tech giant’s stores.
“My youngest daughter, Kaylah, is 13 and does this business with me,” explains Kauffmann. “Origami Owl was a gift to her when she turned 12.” Kaylah demonstrated an entrepreneurial spirit by wanting to go around the neighborhood and do yard work and other odd jobs and her mother saw an opportunity for her daughter. “I thought, ‘If she’s going to try that hard, we should give her something that she can use that will help her.’” They were both inspired by the story of the founder of Origami Owl, Bella Weems, who originally founded the company in 2010 with her babysitting money in an attempt to raise funds for her first car, a white Jeep. The company has come a long way since then and now includes jewelry designers in the U.S. and Canada.
Even after Route for the Brave concludes in late August, Kauffmann anticipates staying closely connected to Helping Hands for Freedom. “When I started speaking with Darin Fishburn (CEO of Helping Hands for Freedom) and he started telling me about who they were and what they did, I got so excited and it gave me chills just listening to him talk,” she explains. “I have retired from two different industries and I love my children and love staying at home and taking care of them and I wouldn’t give it up for anything. But at times I feel like my life is taking care of the house and the laundry. This gave me a really great purpose and it’s something that has solid meaning and value.” Kauffman notes that Origami Owl is definitely a force for good.
Sponsor the Route for the Brave today! There are opportunities for corporate, state and mileage sponsors and the need for new, quality shoes will be ongoing. For additional information on the full route and schedule of the Route for the Brave, visit www.routeforthebrave.org. You can also create fundraising teams and do your very own online fundraiser to support the Route for the Brave. Follow this link for fundraising teams:https://www.classy.org/events/save-22/e71462.
You can follow along with the daily progress of Roth and Winton, plus see a lot of great photos and read inspiring stories at https://www.facebook.com/Routeforthebrave/.
About Helping Hands for Freedom
Helping Hands for Freedom has a primary mission of supporting the surviving spouse and children of a veteran who doesn’t return from the conflict. It can take months for a family to receive the death benefit and often this also results in relocation from base housing. HHFF steps in to help with basic expenses during their time of transition. We assist those severely wounded who need equipment or housing modifications as they adjust to new life circumstances. We also help the children with life enrichment programs, mentorship and counseling. For additional information about Helping Hands for Freedom, visit www.helpinghandsforfreedom.org.