Ann Jackson frees staff for mission critical work

Thursday August 09, 2007 03:05:25 PM


Ann Jackson, ICHF volunteer"There's always a lot of idiot work that has to be done," declares Ann Jackson. "I've taken it as my responsibility to help the ICHF staff with time consuming administrative tasks so they can focus on mission critical work. When there's a mailing to be done, I gather up my friends and throw a stuffing party at my house or the ICHF office. We eat, drink a little wine, get lots of paper cuts, and have a great time helping out."

This nimble, no nonsense senior citizen first met Dr. Novick, ICHF's Medical Director and Sandy McMahan, ICHF's Administrative Director, at the first ICHF art sale fund raiser in 1994. Ann and her husband were so impressed with the organization's work that everyone in their family received a Croatian painting for Christmas that year. The couple's daughter, born in 1956 with a congential heart defect, was one of the early pediatric heart surgery success stories.  Needless to say, Ann was smitten and has worked with ICHF ever since.

Administrative work is just a small piece of Ann's volunteerism with ICHF. Ann believes in grassroots community outreach as a way to help ICHF and to increase its visibility in the general public. She assists with setting up and running ICHF art sale fund raisers at community centers, galleries and in homes. She's harnessed teenagers - interns with the Sheriff's department and the Eagle Scout explorers - to help ICHF with physical moving and administrative work.  And, she makes presentations at churches, encouraging them to "sponsor a child".  Her dream is to have 100 churches across the nation each sponsoring a child every year.

Ann believes there is a direct connection between organization like ICHF and world peace.  Ann travels for volunteer service. She's taught English in rural Poland, tutored students in China, and worked in rural Romania in a failure to thrive clinic.  "It's all about doing good work in developing countries.  People remember and love you for what you do.  You've made a difference in their daily lives. That's what building world peace is all about." Ann Jackson and her team

Ann wants to spread the diversity message of ICHF. "I've watched ICHF grow into a diverse international organization from its Memphis roots.  ICHF saves children on all continents --that includes Africa, Latin America, and South Asia.  We need to get the word to all ethic communities right here in the US that ICHF is here for their people as well.  Its reach is truly international saving children of all races."

Donors and sponsors should take heart to see that ICHF volunteers like Ann help to keep operating costs low through their administrative help. "Every penny they don't have to spend on administrative support leaves more dollars to save children."