by December 21, 2016 at 2:30 pm 0

Chavez Prep Middle School A librarian at a Columbia Heights school is seeking donations to help buy books for her students amid budget cuts.

Jennie Tomlinson-Herr, the librarian at Chavez Prep Middle School (770 Kenyon St. NW), last week launched a GoFundMe page to raise money for the low-income school’s library, which received a 70 percent cut in funding. With about $7,000 less at her disposal, Tomlinson-Herr can’t get the books that she said her need and want.

“The library’s need for books is critical — I have a long, long list of titles that students have requested that I can’t afford to buy,” she said on the fundraising website. “It’s upsetting when I have to tell my students that the library can’t afford to purchase more books. I try to avoid this whenever possible by purchasing highly requested titles out of my own pocket, but the need is greater than what I can afford as an individual.”

Chavez Prep has more than 300 students between sixth and ninth grades. About a third of them check out books from the library every day.

Photo via Chavez Prep Middle School GoFundMe

by Tim Regan August 31, 2015 at 2:00 pm 0

BloomBars, photo via Facebook / BloomBarsMore than two dozen D.C. residents have offered support and donations following a break-in that left Columbia Heights art nonprofit BloomBars with a broken window and missing hundreds of dollars earlier this month.

BloomBars founder John Chambers launched a GoFundMe campaign last Thursday to help recoup some of his organization’s losses. So far, residents have raised more than $1,220.

“There’s been an outpouring of support,” Chambers said. “The things that people have written have really pulled at your heart.”

Chambers added that 26 people have contributed to the fundraiser since it started. Sweet Honey in the Rock co-founder Dr. Ysaye M. Barnwell is among the people who have donated so far.

“Some have lost the art of discernment while some have used art to discern essential truths of what we have lost, what we have gained and who we truly are,” Barnwell wrote. “Thank you BloomBars. I regret what happened, but am glad that I can help art to conquer.”

“I want to frame that quote,” said Chambers.

Chambers hopes to use the raised money to replace the broken window and donation boxes and invest in a new security system.

“It’d be great to knock it out in the next week,” Chambers said. “Then we could get moving.”

Image via Facebook / BloomBars

by Tim Regan August 6, 2015 at 4:15 pm 0

Vandalized mural at Mama Ayesha's

A middle eastern restaurant in Adams Morgan has nearly raised half the money it needs to clean up its recently vandalized mural.

Vandals covered a mural of U.S. presidents at Mama Ayesha’s with red paintballs early Wednesday morning, reported NBC 4.

“It’s sad. My family has worked hard for this restaurant. Blood, sweat and tears over the past 55 years,” Mama Ayesha manager Amir Abu-El-Hawa told NBC 4.

But a GoFundMe campaign has already raised almost $2,000 of the restaurant’s $4,000 goal in just one day.

“Last night our mural was vandalized by an unknown person(s) with a paintball gun,” reads the GoFundMe page. “We are now tasked with the challenge of cleaning the mural without further damaging it, we turn to you our friends, family and the greater Washington DC community in asking for your assistance in helping us achieve this.”

Shortly after the fundraising page was posted, donations of as much as $500 poured in on behalf of friends, family and former customers.

“We love you! Thank you for all you do and have done for the neighborhood,” wrote one donor.

“So sorry this happened to your incredible mural,” said another.

The restaurant added that if donations exceed the $4,000 goal, the excess money will be used to help clean up other graffiti around the city.

Photo via


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