Tina Trammell and her husband Jerry Patterson have supported Seva since 1987. Yet when they met Seva staff members at their cafe outside of Denver, the Blue Sky Cafe, in the spring of 2018, Tina announced that she "wanted to do more." The ensuing conversation inspired Tina to educate her restaurant's clientele about Seva. She now openly displays Seva literature in the cafe, donates a percentage of her daily intake on Wednesdays, and collects additional contributions from diners along the way.
Above : Photo of the The Blue Sky Cafe.
Barbara Meislin, widely known throughout the Bay Area as "The Purple Lady of Tiburon," is one of Seva's most colorful supporters. As a celebrated author, singer, healer, and Seva donor since 1984, Barbara feels a strong obligation to give back to society. "Be joyous, no matter what" is the personal ethos by which she lives her life.
It is a worldview that has been forged through tremendous personal loss. In 1967, her 7-year old daughter Lori contracted a mysterious illness and passed away suddenly. She also lost a brother to eye cancer. In response to these tragedies, Barbara wrote a children's book, designed to help guide young boys and girls through grief and loss. "You can't have a rainbow without rain," she explains. "And out of the tears, the epiphany comes."
One of her gifts, a donation that established a meditation room at Lumbini Eye Hospital in Nepal, exemplifies her approach to life and giving back. Recognizing that hospitals can be stressful environments, she wanted to be sure that both staff members, patients, and family members had a place to relax from the stress and high stakes. The mediation room is named in memory of her daughter Lori, and her brother Allen.
Above: Photograph of Barbara Meislin, "The Purple Lady of Tiburon".
The Giles W. and Elise G. Mead Foundation has generously supported Seva's work with Native Nations in the U.S. since 2013. Last October, Parry Murray, the foundation's Vice President, traveled to Nepal with Seva staff, board members, and other donors. The purpose of the trip was to recognize International World Sight Day with a countrywide campaign to screen and provide free surgeries to those in need. Having been a long time supporter of Seva, Parry was particularly excited to see where Seva's programs began in Nepal, 40 years ago.
She was so moved by her experience that she was immediately spurred to action. This past spring, with Parry's help, the Mead Foundation pledged a 3-year gift in support of Seva's work with the American Indian Sight Initiative. It also made a 3-year pledge for the C20/20 campaign, Seva's bold new global campaign to create eye care access for all who need it.
"What has astounded me most about Seva's work is that from the first day I learned of the organization," Parry recounts, "...is that I have always felt inspired to pitch in, never pressured.
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