Below is an article I wrote for our newspaper, it is editing now and I'll post the article once complete as well...
By: Jennifer Elrod
Remember the days of TP-ing (toilet papering) friend’s homes amidst sleepovers and the mischievousness of adolescence. The worst is once your home was TP-ed, the next morning the mess had to be cleaned up. Well, a local church group is taking the concept of TP-ing a new level. Instead of waking up to a yard and house covered in toilet paper, you instead a faced with a sea of pink flamingos?! “Tickled Pink,” a poster reads from the front yard.
Last weekend, a small group from Christ’s Church of the Valley in San Dimas filled an Arcadia home’s front yard with approximately 30 plastic pink flamingos. Accompanied with the pretty pink birdies are posters stating “Flamingo Flocking Fundraiser” and a note of instructions attached to one of the birds. This group of five of the eleven Team Peru members (The Flamingo Flockers) has come up with a new and creative fundraising idea.
How it works? Donations are made to the church for the team given with an address of a person to “flock”. At night, the group goes to the requested house and fills its yard with 20-30 plastic pink flamingos. The homeowner can then request another house for the birds to migrate to for a donation. All flamingos are removed within 24 hours of the bird’s first appearance in the yard. The cycle of migration continues until the completion of the fundraiser.
The group is raising money for a two-week missions trip to Peru. The group of 11 team members will travel to Cusco, Peru. Cusco is primarily a tourist location which is expensive for the locals; therefore there are many poor families in the area. Some ministry opportunities for the group include service with feeding programs, evangelism, working in a children’s hospital with special needs children, and home-visit prayer teams. The trip, including support of missionaries there, is approximately $2,500. “Fundraising is extremely important to the team because it allows team members to raise support if they cannot personally sponsor the trip. We have set a goal to do two fundraisers a month,” said Jennifer Elrod, a 24-year old team member from Azusa.
However, the group’s fundraising efforts were halted two weeks ago when 25 out of 50 birds were stolen from an Upland yard of one of the team’s leaders home after being “flocked”. A police report was made with the Upland Police Department, although little can be done. The CCV Team Peru group originally paid $50 to rent the 50 birds from a local girl scout troop for a month. They since had to purchase more flamingos and extra for back up. The team found a wholesaler who sold them the birds for $2.25 each. To pay for the missing birds, the team had to take $112.50 out of its Peru fund. “We’re still ready to go, they can’t hold us down,” said 21-year old Charlie Chavez, one of the Peru Flamingo Flockers.
Christ’s Church of the Valley is located at 1404 W. Covina Blvd, San Dimas.