I give because…Director of Development Ellen Francois

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For me, there are really two questions contained in the question Why do you give to Mustard Seed School? The first is simply Why do you give? That’s easy to answer.

I give because it’s one of the most enjoyable things I can do. I give because I have been the recipient of much grace, love, and tenderness in my life and I have to spread it around or I will burst. For me, it’s about gratitude. It’s true that the act of giving benefits others. But it also benefits the giver in many ways. I know this because I see it all the time. I’m a fundraiser! And one of the reasons I do this is because I get to be part of that experience. It’s called the joy of giving and it’s contagious!

There’s a quote I love, written by Melody Beattie, that describes what I’m talking about:

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.

The second question is more specific. “Why give to Mustard Seed?” That’s also easy to answer. I give to Mustard Seed because I’ve seen the payoff and it’s amazing!

Have you ever noticed how many lasting friendships are created and nurtured through the simple act of giving? Just look around! I’ve watched lives changed and people transformed when donors are engaged with those to whom they give.

At Mustard Seed School, I’ve personally witnessed how a child’s imagination can be unlocked and turned into a finely tuned instrument that composes music, writes a memoir, solves a difficult math problem, and organizes a service project to help a beloved teacher and her family. And all while being nurtured within a caring, supportive community.

It helps when I can see that what I give makes a difference. Here at Mustard Seed, I get to see worlds change everyday–one child, one parent, one family at a time.

Thank you, Mustard Seed, for the experience!

Ellen Francois


Ellen Francois has been Mustard Seed’s Director of Development since 2016.  She’s full of gratitude for all that she’s been given and enjoys giving back.