The logo for the Love Drop charity, a great cause!

Love Drop Series: The Stalnaker Family Needs Mobility

by Esther on 12 mei 2011

This is the first tale in the new Love Drop series here at IdentiTales. Love Drop is a great initiative of two American guys, Nate and J$, who come together to help one needy family each month and truly make a difference in their lives.

They are steadily building a community of caring souls who donate as little as one dollar a month, raise awareness of the families’ stories or help them out with specific goods. At the end of the month, Nate and J$ personally deliver the Love Drop to the chosen family and put everything on film!

I wholeheartedly support this microcommunity idea because it’s so direct, practical and transparent. It’s also a great way to feature a family’s personal story and get to ‘know’ them a little. I will be writing monthly about the Love Drop challenges and a specific identity aspect associated with that month’s story.

The May 2011 Love Drop is for Joy and Tony Stalnaker. Check out the introduction video below:

Joy and Tony Stalnaker live in the small town of Church Point, Louisiana, an area that has been heavily affected by last year’s BP oil spill. Over the past few months, they have experienced a significant cutdown in income and have lost three cars.

It’s hard for them to get by with little money and few means of transportation, while still giving their children what they need, doing their job the way they are supposed to and giving back to the tight-knit local community. Read all about the Stalnakers and watch the other videos (more episodes are released during the month) on the Love Drop site.

Mobility is a big issue for the Stalnaker family.

Not owning a car myself, it’s hard to imagine how much a car is needed when you live in rural Louisiana. Or, as teacher Joy describes in the video, how not being able to travel can stop a child from pursuing their well-deserved French scholarship abroad.

For these people, it’s not lack of will or action that holds them back. It’s lack of decent transportation. This means mobility severely impacts their identity.

After all, pursuing your dreams is only possible when you can be physically present at the right place and time.

Want to pitch in?

Helping Joy and Tony Stalnaker is simple and can be done in many ways. Pick the one that works best for you!

  1. Use your connections (or your friends’ and neighbors’ connections) to help them get a used car.
  2. Become a Love Drop Member for as little as $1 a month, or as much as you’re willing to spend.
  3. Donate a specific gift or service.
  4. Buy some art in the Love Drop Art Shop – 100% of sales go directly towards the projects!
  5. Spread the word on the Love Drop project.
  • Love this story, thanks for the shoutout! Will be following along…

    • Thanks Nate, happy to have you here anytime! Keep rocking all your good work, it’s truly inspiring!

  • Carey Turley

    i love the idea and am an active member, but i have to disagree about transparency. i struggle with the fact that members have no idea what the company takes in versus what they give out. although, reading about nate and his vision gives me faith, at this point. i like being able to go to charity navigator or the wise giving guide and see how efficient or wasteful an organization is. my whole life is based on maximizing philanthropy through simple living. i want my charities to reflect my values.

    • Hi Carey, thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! I totally agree that transparency is very important for any organization – and more so for charities. With regard to Love Drop, I like the fact that the donation is filmed so you can see the family on the receiving end and their reactions. They have also started to list the total of gifts given so far (with an estimated value). But you’re right in that you can never be sure about how much money comes in and where it’s spent unless you are the charity itself. There’s a high degree of trust involved.

      • J. Money

        Hey guys! Thank you so much for spreading the love :)

        In regards to transparency, we do our best to show what goes where (If you look at our FAQS (http://www.lovedrop.us/faqs) you’ll see we give 60% of all cash to our recipient and the rest goes toward running Love Drop. 100% of donated gifts go toward each family too. Nate and I who started Love Drop do not take a paycheck at all. In fact, we actually go in debt some months and use our own money to fund it. February’s a perfect example of this – we raised $13,000 to get a service dog for our family and didn’t use a penny to fund Love Drop. We, personally, lost about $4k that month.

        Should we be putting this out for everyone to see? Maybe, maybe not. It certainly shows we’re not trying to screw anyone over 😉 But at the end of the day we do the best we can, and we don’t take anyone’s money for granted. We give what we say we’re going to give, and we show it all on film. If operations costs more, then it’s on Nate and I to figure out how to cut it down and be more efficient. We don’t mess w/ our members’ money. This is a project we really believe in, and if others do too that’s even better. At the end of the day we’re here to do GOOD. And we learn along the way :)

        • Great to hear your reply on this, J$! I guess there’s a fine line between trusting others and proceeding with a decent amount of caution. Both are good starting points :-) Transparency goes a long way, but putting in $4k of your own money on a starting organization… I don’t know if that’s wise, but it certainly proves your good intentions.

          Also, maybe you could enter Love Drop on one of the sites Carey mentioned before somewhere in the future. Who knows, it might bring in extra donations from people for whom these systems provide some security and transparency as to where the money’s going.

          Anyway, lovely to have you guys here today :-)

  • Carey Turley

    good to know j. and i think you should keep ‘putting it out there’. my instincts about you guys is what keeps me a love drop member.