Tanja Kraushaar at a glance
In the Spirit of Giving
For the past 15 years, Tanja Kraushaar has organized many charity initiatives, collecting donations of spare and new items to give to people who need them the most. This is her story of that journey.
Many years ago, my eldest son wished to donate warm clothes and shoes for the homeless in Frankfurt for his 10th birthday. This was the start of a new journey of discovery for us, sparking off something special. We soon established contact with two organizations – the Bahnhofsmission and Weser 5 – and handed over the items we had collected on this occasion.
Cocooned in the comfort of my home, I had never been exposed to the desperation and helplessness felt by the homeless before this initial effort. Seeing it first-hand made a deep impact on me. For the next two years, I continued this donation project on my own, but then started involving family, friends and colleagues to extend the impact of my efforts.
I invited friends and colleagues to donate clothes, sleeping bags, shoes, blankets and other essential items, and for the past decade we have worked with various organizations supporting the homeless such as Weser 5 and Street Angels.
“Cocooned in the comfort of my home, I had never been exposed to the desperation and helplessness felt by the homeless before.”
Starting in 2012, we also began supporting children’s homes. For example, I led the collection of books, sports equipment and games and donated these to Vincenzhaus, run by Caritas. Typically, we bring gifts to children twice a year – sports equipment in the summer and festive gifts for the Christmas season.
In addition, in the winters of 2014 and 2015, we worked with Samaritan’s Purse and supported the shoebox appeal for Christmas gifts for children aged between 3 and 6, filling boxes with a variety of new items ranging from basic toiletries to games, warm clothes and books. Later on in 2017, we expanded our efforts to the children of refugees settled in Frankfurt, including Christmas gifts in the spirit of the season.
Going forward, my plan is to carry on these charity initiatives whilst also reaching out to elderly members of our community. I would like to organize a drive for the elderly in care homes in Frankfurt, to add some extra joy to their lives.
Throughout the past decade, I’ve been so grateful to all my colleagues who collaborated so willingly towards the completion of our different initiatives. It is enlightening to see how much can be done when all of us pitch in together, collecting gifts, packaging them and transporting them to those in need.
A Superstar’s message to us all
Together, we have the power to make a positive impact in our world. The smiles I see on the faces of people whom we help is a massive reward and I ask no more! Stepping out from our sheltered selves and making a difference to those who are less fortunate is a wonderful experience which I will cherish forever.