On the morning of U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords’ emotional resignation from the House, I checked in on the website in memory of Christina-Taylor Green, Dodger scout John Green’s 9-year-old daughter who died in the mass shooting that severely wounded Giffords.
Here’s what the memorial foundation has been up to:
At the time The Christina-Taylor Green Memorial Foundation (C-TGMF) was being formed, The Community Foundation for Southern Arizona (CFSA) held funds in Christina-Taylor’s name. CFSA provided a way to capture the outpouring of love that we felt from our community, many other parts of the nation, and the world.
As CFSA handled the financial oversight of the donations, they provided time for the new foundation to define its mission and initial goals. Before the Christina-Taylor Green Memorial Foundation’s 501c3 status was finalized, CFSA funded several projects, including upgrading the technology at Mesa Verde Elementary and Cross Middle schools with SMART Boards, Physical Education equipment, computers and arts programs.
In conjunction with The Allstate Foundation, The Christina-Taylor Green Little Hands Playground was built at Mesa Verde Elementary School, an outdoor space open to students and to neighborhood residents.
Several other contributors participated in the completion of the playground. Community volunteers provided help with construction. Donations were provided by The Little Tikes Corporation, The Sundt Foundation and The JohnJay and Rich Care For Kids Foundation. The Injury Free Coalition for Kids at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health also partnered on building the project by, among other things, getting design ideas for the nearly 2,000-square-foot play area from Christina-Taylor’s classmates. For details about the playground and its dedication, read more at AZStarnet.
Before school started in August, our foundation partnered with Tierra Antigua Real Estate to collect school supplies and backpacks. Hollaway Elementary and Drexel Elementary schools were the recipients of these items.
“Stuff the Hummers”, our last project of 2011, was a huge success. C-TGMF partnered with Team up for Tucson to benefit The Salvation Army in their annual toy collection for Tucson area children in need. Not only did we surpass all goals for toys donated, we also collected 125 bikes, setting a new record of 10,000 toys/bikes. Our foundation and its volunteers look forward to a long term partnership with Team up for Tucson in hopes of breaking records every year so we can continue to help our local Salvation Army provide toys for needy children in the Tucson Area.
The C-TGMF will be issuing a call for Grant Proposals in the spring of 2012, and we hope to fund multiple small projects. The goal is to give out approximately $50,000 in grant money for projects that will help carry out the mission of the foundation:
The mission of the Christina-Taylor Green Memorial Foundation is to honor the life and memory of Christina-Taylor through charitable and educational projects that reflect and embody her interests, values and dreams.
Earlier this month, on the anniversary of the shooting, Karina Bland of the Arizona Republic wrote movingly about Christina’s survivors, including mother Roxanna and friend Suzi Hileman, who had taken Christina to meet Giffords.
… “Suzi is a dear friend and neighbor,” Green says. “I want Suzi to heal. I don’t want to bring any more sadness to her.”
Each woman has a strong network of friends, but they circle back to one another. A glass of wine. Coffee. Lunch. They live blocks apart.
At times when Green wants to cry, or shout, or rant without someone hushing her, or trying to fix what is upsetting her, she turns to Hileman: “If I need to whine, I go to her house.” Hileman does the same.
There is no comforting them: Christina-Taylor is dead, and nothing anyone can do can change that.
“We both get it because we both went through it,” Green says.
A year later, Green still cries most days. Time hasn’t changed that. …
Here are some pictures of Christina.