Julie Minella essay

Sometimes in life things don’t go our way. Sometimes we get sick or injured. Sometimes we have to take care of a family member and can’t go to work for a while. Things like fundraisers and raffles help people raise money for causes that help people. There are tons of raffles out there that go towards great causes like families in need, sick children, and even animal shelters. When we go to sporting events there is usually a split the pot raffle that not only benefits someone who wins the money but also benefits the organization that the other half of the money will go to. Raffles and fundraisers are a great way to help those in need.

Two years ago, my life took a turn that I never thought it would take. My mom had been battling cancer on and off for a few years and on Christmas Eve we got some heartbreaking news. We were told that the cancer had spread to her brain and at this point there was nothing more the doctors could do. She made the decision to have radiation treatment to prolong her life a little longer, but ultimately wouldn’t cure anything.

The hardest part was that she couldn’t do anything on her own. She had to be under supervision at all times because she needed help. This meant my siblings and I would have to be there for her at all times. My brother was in high school at the time and had to miss much of his senior year to be there to help. My sister was at community college and she had to drop out because she also had to be there as well as not go to work as much. I lived in the city and I had to come to the suburbs as often as I could to be there to help out and I was working two jobs at the time, which I had to miss much of.

I never complained about missing work because obviously I wanted to be there for my mom as much as I could but not working as much meant I wasn’t making enough money to pay my bills. I had college loans to pay as well as rent and groceries. I felt bad because my dad would always give me money to pay my bills since I didn’t have enough, and I didn’t like relying on him for that. With about a month left of my mom’s life, my community came together and did something amazing for my family.

My community set up a fundraiser and raffle to raise money to help my family pay our bills so we wouldn’t have to work as much and spend what little time we had left with my mom as well as off set some of her medical and funeral costs. The fundraiser was amazing because there was so much stuff going out and the amount of people that showed up blew our minds. Many different companies came through and provided awesome things that were being raffled off.

Things such as gift cards, jerseys, gift baskets, and hotel stays were all raffled off for this event. The amount of money that was raised for my family was unbelievable. I never imagined that all these people from family members to people in the community that I had never met before cared so much for my family that they would all take the time to donate money to our family. It was incredible and insanely uplifting.

The money went to help pay for her funeral and to pay off the remainder of some of her bills. The money also went to help my brother and sister and I pay for things that we needed such as rent and loan payments. The money gave us some peace of mind that even though we weren’t able to work as much we were still able to pay for our living expenses while still spending the last few month with our mom. Raffles and fundraisers help people. They help people all the time. Without that fundraiser our family would be dealing with a lot more financially than we did.


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