Tabor Academy’s 2nd Annual Acoustical Evening to Support GiftsToGive


The Fireman Center at Tabor Academy

On a beautiful Friday evening in June, the GiftsToGive volunteer management team went back to school and experienced first hand, a most perfect lesson in giving and service.

Talk about Expeditionary Learning, Tangible Philanthropy and Big Citizenship!

The night was amazing, both in terms of community turnout and all-around great vibes!

Student interns Ednir D’Oliveira and Diarny Fernandes talked about why they volunteer and why giving back is important!

What was billed as a “small and informal” fundraiser to support our work, turned out to be a magical and Tera-gigantic party! Faculty, staff and friends of Tabor turned out to show their support. We were also the recipient of several thousand dollars in cash gifts!

The plan originated with musician Gerry Dineen, a Math Teacher and boys’ hockey coach at Tabor. (Talk about a wonderful idea …. thank you Gerry!) Fellow musician, performer and Head of School John Quirk was enthusiastically on board and green lighted everything. The third musician was Tommy Booth of Plymouth, who performs professionally and is highly sought-after. Tommy donated his night for GiftsToGive and brought down the house!

Gerry Dineen

Gerry Dineen

This event was originated and hosted by Casey Quirk, Nicole Long,  Ixia Bongiorno and Nicole Zutaut.

John Quirk and Tommy Booth

John Quirk and Tommy Booth

GiftsToGive, CEO and Founder, Jim Stevens, spoke to the gathering about the power of giving, big citizenship and tangible philanthropy. He talked about the reality of child poverty in America and about his not being able to understand why there were over 45 million American children in-need. He told the gathering that on the SouthCoast (Newport to the Upper-Cape), over 40,000 children were living in poverty and that over 3,500 local children we homeless. Jim talked about the dismal graduation rates in the public schools, the problems poverty creates with building healthy families and that GiftsToGive was in the business of  building a more caring community around making children successful in school and supporting healthy families.

Jim also talked about how grateful GiftsToGive is for their relationship with Tabor – he specifically talked about Lauren Corliss and Anne Gardiner and how they facilitate the weekly service visits to the mill in New Bedford, after school, by Tabor students and about the most recent “end of school” collection drive they organized that gathered enough great things to help over 200 local children in-need. That Tabor Academy ‘gets it’, that they not only’ talk the talk’ – but in the most tangible ways – they ‘walk the walk’ “. Stevens was further quoted as saying “that Head of School, John Quirk, inherently understands the power of giving, service and civic engagement and that he (Stevens) could not imagine a more powerful platform to build from .. and that he wondered if Tabor students had any idea of how truly lucky they were to be part of this amazing community of  professional educators, administrators, mentors and citizenship poster children”.

The Trouble Makers; Casey, Nicole, Ixia and Nicole

Change Makers; Casey, Nicole, Ixia and Nicole

All of this was made possible by Nicole Long. Her tireless efforts to bring the Tabor Community and GiftsToGive together are paying off in the most sustainable and significant ways and we are truly grateful to her! Talking about community building – Nicole introduced us to the Zutaut Family (Jason and Nicole) who have donated, to-date, over 50,000 brand new children’s books for us to distribute to SouthCoast children who, literally, have no (zero) books in their homes!

At GiftsToGive we spend most of our time and energy building community. Our evening at Tabor Academy, inspired us to do better and be more.

Plus of course – we learned that no matter how old you are – it’s never too late to go back to school!

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