Why is it important to incorporate charity into your life? For me, it's very shocking when people with the charities that I'm involved with tell me, “thank you” for showing up. My life would feel so empty and pointless without being involved in attempting to make a difference. It fills a void, to be honest.
Years ago, I was introduced to Camp Kindle. They provide a cost-free camping program to children who are infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS in order for them to connect and share with other kids that are in the same situation.
I have performed at events to raise money or just shown up to speak about awareness. Each year, I have become more attached to these people and children and my little sister, Kristy, has really taken on the role of being intensely active. For the last three years, she has dedicated two weeks annually volunteering as a camp counselor. Setting up camp, preparing games, and then onto swimming, painting, dancing, singing, and celebrating life with these special children. They are so creative. They do carnival day and lip-sync day which are always hysterical! They really get into it. No holding back! Also everybody gets a nature name. Kristy's is Wombat. They tried to name me Blossom, but I went with Coyote! So hardcore! I love being able to take the time away from my crazy schedule to go and hang with the Kindlers and the counselors. I usually establish a collection of toys and fun kiddy stuff to play with, like hula hoops and water guns, to bring when I visit because I hate showing up empty-handed. After arriving, I love being able to sit around and catch up with my sis and everybody about how the week's been going.
In between stories and hugs, you will hear the boys burst into a song and dance taunting the girls. Then, the girls retaliate with even more energy back to the boys. My sis knows all the fun Kindle songs about hippos, and beavers. It's a riot! There are dance moves that go with all the songs so I try to keep up but these kids have sooooo much enthusiasm, it's a challenge! Depending on which event they have going that night, I go ahead and get started on crazy, glittery, fun hair and makeup for my sister's team and whoever else is willing to let me pigtail or sparkle them. Costumes such as tutu's or boas are always part of the chaos. I host the show and give each group big introductions like we are at the Grammys!