Local woman spearheads relief effort

Tammy Pauley was, like everyone else, shocked and horrified by the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

It took her a little while to come to grips with what had happened in New York and Washington, D.C., but as soon as she did, she knew she had to help.

She began hearing of various organizations collecting donations for the relief efforts and wanted to make a donation herself.

"I wasn't sure where to do it or what my small donation could do," said Pauley, a hair stylist at The Parlor in the Heights. She talked with some friends and other hair stylists in town about the tragedy and how they could help, but they couldn't decide on the best way to contribute. Then she got an idea.

"I thought, what if I were to donate a day's pay," she said. She called another hair stylist and asked if she would be willing to do the same thing. Within a couple of hours Pauley had nearly a dozen fellow hair stylists committed to the cause. Then she decided to branch out.

"I said, "Hey, I know a lot of business owners in town," Pauley said. She began calling and e-mailing people -- many of them clients -- and asking them to donate a day's pay or even a few dollars to the cause. A friend who works at Columbia River Bank advised her on setting up a "holding fund," which she did with the title, "Hood River Together Aids in America's Crisis."

"I just want to show people on the East Coast that we may be far away but we still care about what they're going through," Pauley said.

Pauley has designated Thursday as the day she and many other participants will donate to the "One Day's Pay" fund. But she encourages people to donate at any time, and in any amount.

"It doesn't matter what the dollar amount is," she said. "Every dollar counts."

As she began to get more and more people committed to donate to the fund, she realized she didn't know exactly where the money should go -- where it could be best utilized. So she called Rep. Greg Walden to ask him.

"His office is suggesting the money go to the Red Cross," Pauley said. "So that's where it'll go."

One of Pauley's "recruits" was Nicole Morton, owner of Twiggs. Morton has called other downtown business owners about participating in the fund drive, and also has gotten several local artisans to donate pieces that she will raffle off at her store on Thursday, with all the proceeds going to the fund. Morton also plans to donate 20 percent of her sales on that day to the fund.

Morton said some of the business owners she called declined to participate because they were already contributing in some other manner.

"We're all doing our part," Morton said. "Whether it's this (fundraiser) or another one or on their own, we're all doing something and that's what's important."

Pauley hopes that literally everyone in town will donate at least something. "I figure there's about 5,000 people in Hood River," she said. "If everyone gave $5, that's $25,000."

Pauley got her first individual donation Tuesday afternoon -- $20 from a client who was in getting her hair cut.

"It's very exciting," Pauley said. "It's about coming together as a community and opening our hearts. This is how we make things better."

Anyone interested in participating in the "One' Day's Pay" campaign can call Tammy Pauley at 386-6100; Brigette at Foils at 386-1786; or Nicole at Twiggs at 386-6188. Or contact Columbia River Bank at 387-2444.

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