Spending time in the slammer for a noble cause
I was recently fingerprinted, handcuffed, and put behind bars. The crime: aiding and abetting the March of Dimes mission of saving babies. Lesson learned: Black and white stripes are definitely what not to wear this season. As part of the March of Dimes Jail and Bail fund-raising event, I accepted the role of “jailbird,” one I have consistently tried to avoid during my adult life. I just have to raise my bail of $1,000 and I’ll be free to go, without a single conjugal visit or jailhouse tat to brag about to my friends.All kidding aside, the March of Dimes is a great nonprofit organization with a mission that remains close to my heart – saving babies. Many people may not know that President Franklin D. Roosevelt founded the March of Dimes in 1938. And they may not realize that in Colorado, one out of every eight babies is born with low birth weight, the leading cause of newborn death in our state. Nationally, 3,200 babies are born with birth defects. Even more heartbreaking, 416 babies die before their first birthdays.With November being Prematurity Awareness Month, I challenge readers to support the March of Dimes with a donation to fuel research, community service and education. Locally, the March of Dimes funds Family Visitor Programs with more than $22,000 proffered for free visits for mothers-to-be with questions about pregnancy, labor and delivery, household preparation for a baby, and breast-feeding.The March of Dimes’ goal is to raise at least $15,000 in the valley through Jail and Bail. Jim Barnocky, director of operations for the Colorado chapter, expected around 300 participants in this year’s mock jail event: “We’ve had great response in Glenwood Springs because I think the smaller towns are more receptive to donating time and money for a good cause,” he said. “We had a lot of ‘jailbirds’ turn in other people, which really helps.””Jailbirds” Linda L’Estrange, a broker associate for Mason and Morse Real Estate, and her husband, Bleu, were more than happy to collect bail and raise money for the March of Dimes. “Linda volunteered to represent her office, and then she turned me in,” Bleu said. “We just wanted to get out and do something great to benefit the community. Going into this time of the year, it was a perfect start to the giving season.”For more information about the March of Dimes, call the Western Slope division at 970-243-0894 or visitwww.marchofdimes.com. Family Visitors Programs can be reached at 945-1234. Donations for my bail can be sent to April Clark, Glenwood Springs Post Independent, 2014 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, CO 81601. I hope to post bail by Thanksgiving.I’m just thankful the stripes are vertical – horizontal stripes are a fashion felony.April E. Clark is not a flight threat and is “out on bond.” Contact her at email@example.com.
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