Fairhaven’s Village Books as well as Colin Flynn and Anders Crabo two recent Sehome High School graduates, were among this years Philanthropy Awards Honorees.
Outstanding Philanthropic Small Business: Village Books
Village Books has been a community leader through philanthropy, education, and activism for many years. Much more than an independent book store, Village Books is owned by Chuck and Dee Robinson. The Bellingham book store is large part of the Fairhaven and larger Bellingham community, connecting individuals and causes through the store’s newsletter, and many book signings and fundraising events they do. As well as traditional fundraising this small business often plays a leadership role in efforts to strengthen and enhance the Whatcom County community. Village Books helped lead the way for Bellingham to become the number one Green Power city in the country and to become a national leader in the area of sustainable living. Village Books also led the way in establishing the Fairhaven Village Green Fund, the Korean War Children’s Memorial Fund, and the Depot Market Fund. Chuck and Dee Robinson maintain the public trails near their store and contribute to numerous community non-profit organizations that help preserve salmon habitat, wet lands, working farms and clean water. They also teach children and adults how to read and even feed them when they’re hungry.
Outstanding Young Philanthropist: Anders Crabo & Colin Flynn
Colin Flynn and Anders Crabo went beyond mere fundraising for their senior year culminating project to literally leave a legacy for the future. The Sehome High School students graduated in June 2008. They spent 15 days during the summer of 2007 biking 1,200 miles throughout Washington state to raise money for an endowment fund they established at the Whatcom Community Foundation. They pair created the Bellingham Youth Philanthropy Project with a goal of strengthening the bond between high school students and their community through charitable giving. After raising $14,000 by having businesses pledge money per mile of their bike trip.they established a committee of Sehome High School students and faculty, to advise the community foundation on how to disperse the funds for environmental projects in future years. Woodstock Farm Conservancy, a nonprofit working to restore farm property acquired by the city of Bellingham was one of the first to be granted $550. Their endowment fund has transcended the norm of youth philanthropy by integrating two fundamental components in their creative effort and true commitment and the traction of legacy. Flynn, is now a freshman at Pitzer College, and Crabo, a freshman at Pomona College,
The Philanthropy Awards are give by The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the largest organization of professional fundraiser’s in the world.