This year's Lodge Sweetheart is Elizabeth "Liz" Sample. The Red Pig program is one of many of Liz's projects this year.
Money raised throughout the state by the Elks Sweetheart program funds one week of camp in Ottine for 350 special needs children at no cost to the families of the campers. Through the funds raised by the Sweetheart Program, special grant money is available to local lodges to purchase goods and services for special needs children.
Texas Elks Camp (http://www.texaselkscamp.org/ ) is committed to teaching children that having a difference doesn't make a difference. Children ages 7 to 15 with varying emotional and physical special needs come to Elks Camp for one week and go home strong, confident and ready to face the world with new hope for the future, as reported consistently by parents and guardians. The Sweetheart Program is the primary source of income to support the Texas Elks Camp. Each Elks lodge in the state of Texas has the opportunity to designate a Sweetheart whose primary function all year is to raise money that goes to support the Texas Elks Camp and Prosthetics Grant Program. In the Gulf Coast District, there is a Sweetheart ball each year to crown the District Sweetheart that raised the most money for the kids. We are proud to say that the Katy Elks Lodge has been a winner of the District Sweetheart more than any other lodge in the Gulf Coast District and has won State Sweetheart more than any Elks Lodge in the state of Texas. Katy Elks Lodge #2628 is proud of our heritage of working hard and giving generously to support the Sweetheart Program and the benefactors, who are the children with special needs.
We fill the Pigs in our Lodge, which is great, but we need to also reach out to the Community for their support wherever possible. Each Lodge member can receive one of our Red Pigs to fill themselves, or bring them to your work or a business that will allow you to leave it to collect donations, therefore, getting the community involved.
Texas Elks Special Grants applications are now available online. Please access the link and submit your application directly to our Lodge at 1050 Katy Ft Bend Rd, Katy Texas 77493. If you have questions, please contact the lodge at 281-391-2763.
Those devices eligible for consideration fall under four categories:
Replace missing body parts, such as limbs or eyes.
Restore body part functions such as hearing aids, telephonic equipment, bracing devices for spines or limbs, and,
Adaptive/ assistive devices for health, safety of the basic functioning or enhancing the quality of life, such as scaling equipment, positioning equipment, mobility equipment, integration equipment, and adaptive/assistive forms of technology.
Other items/services deemed appropriate by local lodges.
Eligibility criteria are written to be as inclusive as possible. All children having special needs will be considered for grant assistance providing the following criteria are met:
A resident of Texas.
Up to 18 years of age or extended to 21 years of age, if still enrolled in school.
Whose special needs are neither fully covered by a private or public insurance carrier.
Whose special needs are not fully met by either a state and/or federal agency,
Whose special needs are not fully met by another grant program, and,
Whose financial needs justify assistance.
APPLICATION PROCESS PROCEDURE
Upon receipt of the application, the committee reviews and upon approval the application is submitted to TECSI for final processing, verification and fund certification.