Do Something More

Melissa Draper

This is a service-oriented podcast where we highlight the helpers who inspire us all to do something more.

We 'highlight the helpers' and tell the inspiring stories of others (individuals, organizations, and nonprofits) who have found unique ways to give back to their communities. And we inspire listeners to 'do something more' with simple ideas on how you can serve, volunteer and make a difference.

Weekly interview and solo episodes hosted by Melissa Draper.

You can contact Melissa at dosomethingmore.podcast@gmail.com.

Follow the podcast on Instagram @dosomethingmore.podcast


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Society & CultureSociety & Culture

Episodes

63. Rebroadcast: Lori Muir with 'Ironman Q Foundation' and Supporting Cancer Families
Jun 12 2024
63. Rebroadcast: Lori Muir with 'Ironman Q Foundation' and Supporting Cancer Families
After a 5 year battle with cancer, Quinton Muir passed away in 2017 at the age of 16. Now his parents, Jeff and Lori Muir are running a foundation called the Ironman Q Foundation to honor his memory and to help other families who find themselves navigating a cancer diagnosis.This of course was a tender interview as Lori shared her memories of Quinton and some of the reasons they felt motivated in different ways to begin this foundation and help other people in honor of Quinton. She shares how they started out by offering scholarships to kids graduating from the high school Quinton attended, and then moved on from there to doing a variety of things to help other cancer families…including donating quilts, organizing Christamas boxes, giving away Jazz tickets, or even organizing retreats for angel moms.The Muirs are my neighbors, and I am so inspired by their example of acting on thoughts and promptings to help others, even while they themselves were still grieving the loss of their boy and navigating their own hard days. I loved how Lori shared it doesn’t take much to help someone and make a difference and we can all ‘be that someone’ for somebody else.This episode originally aired May 16, 2023 (which is actually Quniton’s birthday!). Since then, I haven’t featured any other organizations that have a mission of helping people affected by cancer…but I would like to because I know there are many doing good things just like the Ironman Q Foundation. Send me a email at dosomethingmore.podcast@gmail.com if you have a good idea for one I should feature. Links mentioned in the episode:Ironman Q Foundation WebsiteIronman Q Foundation InstagramIronman Q Foundation FacebookFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
60. Meg Busing with 'Midwest You Can Foundation' and Creating Empowerment and Community for Individuals Navigating Epilepsy
May 22 2024
60. Meg Busing with 'Midwest You Can Foundation' and Creating Empowerment and Community for Individuals Navigating Epilepsy
When she was a freshman in high school, Meg Busing was in a tragic car accident with some of her friends. She ended up with a traumatic brain injury and as a teenager had to learn how to navigate life with a distinct set of new challenges. She was able to successfully graduate high school, but a few years later in college, she had her first seizure and was diagnosed with epilepsy. She managed to achieve her dream of graduating with her degree in nursing, but then a few years later during a pregnancy her seizures increased and she had to pull back on her nursing career. This was when she decided to start her nonprofit, the Midwest You Can Foundation. The goal of her foundation is to create community and empowerment for those living with epilepsy.One of the purposes of the Midwest You Can Foundation is to run a yearly summer camp for kids with epilepsy. Meg wants these kids to experience for themselves the power and confidence that can come with reminding yourself of what you CAN do. Their slogan is ‘with epilepsy, too many days are filled with reminders of what shouldn’t be done, we’re on a mission to change that.’Listen to the podcast to hear more of Meg’s story and journey, to learn about the summer camps she runs and the good experiences kids and parents have had with them, and also hear some sweet encouragement from Meg for anyone that might be living with epilepsy or helping their child navigate it as well.Links mentioned in the episode:Midwest You Can Foundation WebsiteMidwest You Can Foundation InstagramMidwest You Can Foundation FacebookFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
59. Jen Simonic and Masey Kaplan with 'Loose Ends' and Matching Crafters with Projects People Have Left Unfinished Due to Death or Disability
May 15 2024
59. Jen Simonic and Masey Kaplan with 'Loose Ends' and Matching Crafters with Projects People Have Left Unfinished Due to Death or Disability
Jen Simonic and Masey Kaplan are both crafters at heart and have been friends for over 30 years. After having their own experiences with finishing crafting projects for other friends and loved ones who had passed away, they started tossing around the idea of a nonprofit where they could create a community of crafters who would be available to finish projects families and individuals would like finished that their loved ones had started.Now their nonprofit, Loose Ends, has a community that spans 64 countries and over 24,000 people. Their mission is to ease grief, create community, and inspire generosity by matching volunteer handwork finishers with projects people have left unfinished due to death or disability.I loved talking with Jen and Masey and hearing the obvious passion and joy they find in the work they do with their nonprofit. They share some great stories of some of the projects they’ve seen people finish, and the real sense of community and even lifelong friendships that are formed in the process. This episode will give you a new found appreciation and love for all the crafters in your life and it’s also a good reminder of the real sense of belonging that can be found when people serve and create together.Links mentioned in the show:Loose Ends Project WebsiteLoose Ends Project InstagramLoose Ends Project FacebookFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
57. Melanie Rodger with 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep' and Providing Remembrance Portraits to Parents Experiencing the Death of a Baby
May 1 2024
57. Melanie Rodger with 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep' and Providing Remembrance Portraits to Parents Experiencing the Death of a Baby
Melanie Rodger lost her first son just 32 hours after his birth when she was 20 years old. That loss prompted her to want to seek community and not feel alone as she navigated the grieving process. During that time, she learned about 'Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep', a nonprofit that provides remembrance portraits to parents experiencing the death of a baby. Melanie had known she wanted to be a part of other families' stories in a way that others had been there for her, and when she was ready she started volunteering for 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep'.She has served as a dispatcher to help find photographers for families, as a photographer herself, and now also works for 'Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep'. This episode is definitely a tender one as Melanie shares her own experience of losing her baby boy, and what it’s like being a photographer for others experiencing their own losses. She talks about the especially vital role their organization played during the pandemic, providing many family members with the only way they were able to see and remember these babies through the pictures they took.  She shares how it’s an honor to be invited into these spaces with families and I appreciated the beautiful advice she gave at the end saying that ‘you should never let the fear of emotion stop you from helping and being part of somebody else’s story.’Links mentioned in the episode:Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep WebsiteNow I Lay Me Down to Sleep InstagramNow I Lay Me Down to Sleep FacebookFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
56. Krysti Wright with 'Stitching Hearts Worldwide' and Providing Service Opportunities to Create Handmade Items for People in Need
Apr 24 2024
56. Krysti Wright with 'Stitching Hearts Worldwide' and Providing Service Opportunities to Create Handmade Items for People in Need
Several years ago Krysti Wright felt nudged to more intentionally start using her gifts and talents to make a difference in the world. She had always loved doing long-arm quilting and decided that was where she could make her contribution. She started off with a small group of women who worked together making and donating quilts to different causes. But then she started having other groups reach out to her who wanted to help or needed service projects to do, and that’s when she realized what her real role was. Now her nonprofit, Stitching Hearts Worldwide, provides service opportunities for individuals, groups, and businesses wanting to help those in need. They provide the necessary tools and materials to make handmade essential items for people in local communities and and all over the world who suffer from natural disasters, human injustices, or other unforeseen tragedies beyond their control. As Krysti says so perfectly in this episode…it’s not always about how many projects they produce, but more about the many people that are getting the opportunity to serve.I loved this interview. There were a few technical difficulties when we recorded, but thankfully Krysti’s complete genuineness and caring heart come through. Listen to this episode and be inspired by her story and get the reminder of how powerful it can be to create and serve with other people.Links mentioned in the episode:Stitching Hearts Worldwide WebsiteStitching Hearts Worldwide InstagramStitching Hearts Worldwide FacebookTalk by Cheryl A. Esplin that Krysti mentions in the episodeFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
54. Janelle Christensen with 'Family Haven' and Working to Prevent and Treat Child Abuse by Providing Support and Healing to Families
Apr 9 2024
54. Janelle Christensen with 'Family Haven' and Working to Prevent and Treat Child Abuse by Providing Support and Healing to Families
Janelle Christensen has been involved with Family Haven in a myriad of ways for almost 15 years and right now she serves as the Director. On this episode of the podcast she shares how Family Haven fulfills its primary purpose of preventing and treating child abuse.What impressed me in this interview is Family Haven truly believes in coming at this sensitive issue from all sides. First by empowering families and giving them the tools they need to be healthy and succeed, through things like parenting classes and providing child care that parents can access for any reason. They also provide therapy and treatment so those who have experienced abuse or families trying to break generational cycles can find the hope and healing they need.The powerful message I took away from this interview is that no family or child needs to walk the road of life alone. Whether it’s getting help and support for the current season you’re in, or finding healing from past experiences, there is help and hope to be found and it is places like Family Haven that work hard to provide that for their community.Links mentioned in the show:Family Haven WebsiteFamily Haven InstagramFamily Haven FacebookUtahFamilies.org-find Family Support Centers across UtahNational Family Support NetworkFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
53. Brady and Andrea Murray with 'Rods Heroes' and Inspiring Families to Answer the Call to Adopt Children in Unique Circumstances
Apr 2 2024
53. Brady and Andrea Murray with 'Rods Heroes' and Inspiring Families to Answer the Call to Adopt Children in Unique Circumstances
Brady and Andrea Murray are the parents of 11 children, 7 of them they adopted into their family. Their journey with adoption and their passion for advocating for children began after their first son was born with Down syndrome. Soon after that, they became aware of the fate that many children born with Down syndrome around the world face of being abandoned or left in orphanages.That fueled their idea to create a nonprofit to help many of those children find families and homes. The mission of their nonprofit now is to inspire families to answer the call to adopt children with Down syndrome or other unique circumstances, and they call their nonprofit Rods Heroes. This was an inspiring episode! Brady and Andrea are very honest about some of the realities of adoption and the feelings they’ve experienced along the way with their journey, but they also share the light, hope, and joy in bringing children and families together. Listen to the episode  to learn more about their nonprofit, some of the programs they do to further their cause, and the many miracles they’ve seen along the way. Links mentioned in the episode:Rods Heroes WebsiteRods Heroes InstagramRods Heroes FacebookRods Heroes AppBrady and Andrea's Podcast 'See the Miracle'Follow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
50. Tallia Feltis with 'The Neighborhood Art Center' and Providing an Engaging Space for Kids to Create Art
Mar 12 2024
50. Tallia Feltis with 'The Neighborhood Art Center' and Providing an Engaging Space for Kids to Create Art
Tallia Feltis was raising her young kids in Provo, Utah when she realized they needed an accessible and affordable place they could go to create, explore, learn and try new things. She decided to be the one to create that community space, and the Neighborhood Art Center was born. Tallia’s taken her passions from visiting other Children’s Museums around the country and seeing what her own kids enjoyed doing, and she’s put all of those ideas together into one engaging space for children and families. In this episode she walks us through their different stations at the center, and also some of the different classes and community activities they provide.One thing I was so impressed with is how hard Tallia has worked to make the Neighborhood Art Center an accessible place for all by doing things like keeping their prices low, having a pass families can check out at the local library, and even providing scholarships for their art classes.This podcast will make want to go and create something fun with the kids in your life! But it will also inspire you to see how anyone can truly see a need in their community and work hard to fulfill it.Links mentioned in the episode:The Neighborhood Art Center WebsiteThe Neighborhood Art Center InstagramThe Neighborhood Art Center FacebookUtah Nonprofits Association PDF file of steps to form non-profitChildren's Museum of PittsburghChildren's Museum of Manhattan Follow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
48. Wendy Osborne with 'Tabitha's Way' Food Pantry and Helping People Through Tough Times by Providing Temporary Food Assistance
Feb 27 2024
48. Wendy Osborne with 'Tabitha's Way' Food Pantry and Helping People Through Tough Times by Providing Temporary Food Assistance
Wendy Osborne was working in a corporate career when she found herself on a spiritual journey and felt inspiration come that she needed to open a local food pantry in her community. She decided to name the pantry ‘Tabitha’s Way’ after a story from the Bible about a woman who provided food and clothing to the needy. That was in 2010, and now their pantry operates out of three different locations in Utah County, serving thousands of people each month. I learned a lot in this interview! It was fascinating to learn the logistics of the ways a food pantry works and how they fill in the gap of taking surplus from businesses and organizations in the community and distributing that to those in need. I loved hearing the stories Wendy shared about families and individuals they’ve served. At the end of the episode, she shares her thoughts about how food insecurity is a problem that can be solved by everyone in the community working together.Listen to the podcast to learn more about ‘Tabitha’s Way’. You might also feel inspired for how you can help people in need of food assistance in your own community.Links mentioned in the show:Tabitha's Way Food Pantry WebsiteTabitha's Way Food Pantry InstagramTabitha's Way Food Pantry FacebookUrban InstituteFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More FacebookDo Something More YouTube
47. Ivan Gonzalez with 'Best Seat in the House' and Providing Joy and Fun for Children Experiencing Difficult Times
Feb 20 2024
47. Ivan Gonzalez with 'Best Seat in the House' and Providing Joy and Fun for Children Experiencing Difficult Times
Several years ago, Ivan Gonzalez wanted to throw himself a birthday party. But it was a little different than your typical party. At this party he wanted to invite children and families going through hard times, whether it be because of poverty and finances, or because of a medical diagnosis, or special needs. After having a great time watching these kids be able to experience true joy for the evening, Ivan decided to plan another event and then another, and that’s how his non-profit ‘Best Seat in the House’ began. And now not only do they put on these fun events for families and children, but they have branched out to find tickets and opportunities for kids to visit different events and venues in their community that they otherwise would never have the chance to experience.Even though they regularly see kids who are battling hard things, Ivan’s non-profit is really all about joy and the idea that every child should have the opportunity to experience those simple fun and joyful moments, no matter what their current life situation is. Listen to the podcast to learn more from Ivan and also here some great stories about the kids they’ve been able to serve.Links mentioned in the show:Best Seat in the House WebsiteBest Seat in the House InstagramBest Seat in the House FacebookFollow the podcast on social media:Do Something More InstagramDo Something More Facebook