Philanthropy Friday: A Breath of Fresh Air

Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer. You can view past posts from the series here.

As we gear up for summer, many of us are planning outdoor excursions to parks, oceans, lakes and mountains. One of the goals for me and my boys is to travel to as many Maine State Parks as possible this summer. I’ve got a vehicle pass for the parks and they’ve got a passport book in which to collect stamps. The sky’s the limit.

Some kids, however, don’t get to experience the joy of the outdoors outside of big city walls. I recently received an email from the Fresh Air Fund that I thought was worth sharing. From their press release:

This summer, share the beauty of your community with a Fresh Air child while enjoying the pure joys of summer in your own backyard! Thousands of volunteer host families in rural, suburban, and small town communities across 13 states from Virginia to Maine and Canada open their hearts and homes to New York City children from low-income communities through The Fresh Air Fund’s Volunteer Host Family program. The Fresh Air Fund, an independent, not-for-profit agency, has provided free summer experiences to more than 1.8 million New York City children from low-income communities since 1877.

Host families open their homes to children who might not otherwise be able to enjoy a summer away from New York City. Fresh Air children experience simple pleasures like running barefoot through the grass, swimming in a cool lake, and gazing at star-filled skies. Through the eyes of Fresh Air children, families often rediscover the beauty of their own communities.


Do you remember Michelle’s guest post about the Fresh Air Fund last year? Michelle’s family hosts a Fresh Air Fund child every year. As Michelle explains, it’s more than just a summer experience.

I hope to become a Fresh Air Fund host family sometime in the future. What child wouldn’t want to explore Maine for a summer?

For now, I encourage you to check out Michelle’s post once again and consider being a host family for the Fresh Air Fund. If you are ready to take the next step, contact Amy Goodwin at 207-208-6510 or visit The Fresh Air Fund at

What are your plans for the summer?

Philanthropy Friday: Making an Impact Through Collaboration

Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer. You can view past posts from the series here.

This following article is a guest post submitted by fellow Global Team of 200 members Lisa Van Engen and Amy Sullivan.

Amy Sullivan

Amy Sullivan. Word lover. Book devourer. Music addict. Amy drinks sweet tea, turns her nose up at okra, and attempts to tell her daughters “yella” isn’t a color. Amy’s first book on generous living will release this fall.

Lisa Van Engan

Lisa Van Engen is a writer who has found the deepest moments in her life rooted in times of service. She lives on near Lake Michigan with her family and loves the beach and books.

Amy and Lisa met a few years ago through The Global Team of 200. Last fall they joined their shared passion for making a difference by launching an Ezine called Impact.


Their first Ezine Impact with Crafts featured twelve ideas for making an impact with crafting. Twelve bloggers shared their creations from welcome to the neighborhood cards and writing love letters to superhero capes for children with life-threatening illness.

Amy and Lisa love to gather like-minded writers, bloggers and photographers to collaborate. Shared ideas and collaboration make service a viable option even in the midst of demanding schedules. They especially try to feature ideas that would be possible to complete as a family.

There are so many ways to make an impact and by bringing ideas together in a free, easy to access form, they hope to inspire readers to serve, as well as deepen their community of those who care about making a difference. Combined efforts multiply the reach of service even further. We can benefit from the expertise, gifts and passions of others. Impact provides another platform for those make a difference voices they love so much.

Amy and Lisa believe you can touch the world in a way no one else can, in small and big ways. They hope Impact encourages you to serve and give generously.

This summer they will share the second ezine Impact with Saving and Simple Living.

Are you interested in being part of a future Impact? Send them a note. They would love to hear from you!

Amy L. Sullivan blogs at Amy L. Sullivan.  You can contact her at

Lisa Van Engen blogs at About Proximity. You can contact her at

Philanthropy Friday: Wrestling for Good

Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer. You can view past posts from the series here.


Luke Robinson is a certified nutrition specialist and fitness trainer. He’s also the owner of WolfPack Fitness and a former wrestler. (And when I say wrestler, I mean a Stone Cold Steve Austin kind of wrestler.)

When I met Luke about a year ago during a half-day workshop for entrepreneurs, it was apparent that he is passionate about what he does. He’s not your typical fitness trainer and nutritionist. He talks about things like skipping breakfast, not counting calories, limiting excessive cardio, lifting heavy, and eating carbs at night. He calls it the “future of nutrition.” We probably had a ten minute conversation on bacon alone.


WolfPack Fitness is based in Auburn, Maine and can be found on the banks of the Androscoggin River. Workouts at WolfPack Fitness are held outside year round (yes, even in February in Maine!) and involve things like large tires and sledgehammers rather than elliptical runners and free weights. While I haven’t been to WolfPack class (yet), I have a good friend who goes on a regular basis and absolutely loves it.

Not only does Luke have a mission to “help clients find happiness and self-confidence while gaining a new appreciation for the gifts of humanity”, he also gives back in a big way and gets everyone in his WolfPack involved. You can read more about how he gives back in this guest post on Robb Wolf’s blog.


When I saw Luke’s Facebook status the other day, I knew it needed to be this week’s Philanthropy Friday. He had decided to go back to wrestling for a night, with one important stipulation. With Luke’s permission, I decided to just copy and paste it here.

In Luke’s words:

Hey fellow Mainers and wrestling fans! Since I was a young boy, I always had a feeling I would do something big with my life. Hell, I used to practice my autograph all day in my school notebooks. I used to think that “big thing” was being a sports star or as it nearly turned out to be, a professional wrestler. But throughout my life there has been one constant- I really like seeing people happy. After all, that’s why I wanted to become a wrestler in the first place – I wanted to make people feel the same passion, emotion, and excitement that I felt growing up watching guys Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Rock, Mick Foley, and Shawn Michaels.

Well as it turns out, my “big thing” wasn’t professional wrestling but it is about making people happy. I get to do that with my business, WolfPack Fitness. WolfPack not only gives me the opportunity to teach people how to eat and move like real human beings but it gives me the chance to share the beautiful wisdom and knowledge that I’ve learned from amazing souls like my mom, dad, and teachers like Mrs. Weymouth, Mr. Robertson, Mr. Barry, Mr. Flynn, and Mr. Beauparlant (just to name a few). WolfPack is about so much more than working out. WolfPack is about learning to see the world in a different way. It’s about becoming a humble, appreciative human being who sees each day as a beautiful gift. It’s about respecting that gift by feeding your body with real food, moving in ways the body was meant to move, giving generously to those in need, and LOVING yourself and others with a happy heart. To steal a line from clients, WolfPack makes MY soul shine.

I’ve been asked many times to wrestle again over the past year to which I’ve consistently said “no.” But when I was asked to wrestle just 30 minutes from my home in Auburn – I got an idea… what if I make a deal with the promoter that all my pay-day goes to charity as long as I can get at least 20 members of “The Pack” to attend the show!? Well I announced it at my classes this week and I think we already have that number exceeded!

I haven’t decided which charity I’ll be donating my pay-day to but I have really enjoyed giving to the soup kitchens and food pantries this year since high quality food is such a pillar here at WolfPack. However, if anyone has suggestions, I’d love to hear them in the comment thread below.

I also created an “event page” on the WolfPack Fitness page. A big group of The Pack will be traveling up together, going out to dinner, making signs, etc. If you want to get those updates then please click the following link and let us know you’ll be going:

Thank you all! WolfPack 4 Life! Ahhhhhhwooooo!

Do you see what I mean about passion? Are you fired up yet?

When I contacted Luke about this post, he was participating in a school wellness day and conducting “primal playouts.” I encourage you to follow him and WolfPack Fitness on Facebook even if it’s just to check out what he’s doing. WolfPack Fitness also works with people outside of Maine for “elite distance consulting.”

And, of course, if you’re in Maine, you can also have the unique opportunity to see Luke wrestle one more time.

Are you #SheWolfStrong?


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