“No one goes to their grave wishing they had worked harder. Relax and have fun, do what gives you joy. The best is yet to be – better than you could ever imagine.”
November 5th 2014 NEW HOPE, PA – For the 2nd consecutive year, Bucks Happening has named the Top 10 Movers & Shakers of Bucks County. Our accomplished judges had their work cut out for them with dozens of inspirational stories submitted by readers.
Now, with the official results in and this year’s Movers & Shakers assembling recently to celebrate, we’re taking a closer look at each winner and sharing their incredible stories.
Meet Nancy Bragin of Southampton, PA, a Philadelphia University of the Arts alumnus and the Founder of Tuesday Afternoon Philly Outreach, a local charity that provides much needed assistance to Philadelphia’s homeless.
BH: How did you decide to settle down in Southampton?
NB: Twenty-eight years ago we were looking for our first house when we drove past a sign that said “Southampton – a nice place to live.” It’s true, you know. We’ve been here ever since.
BH: What motivates you every morning?
NB: Every day is a new beginning, a fresh start, a chance to make a difference.
BH: What would you say is your idea of a perfect day?
NB: A Tuesday afternoon, giving out clothes and food to the homeless.
BH: Who inspires you?
NB: So many have been an inspiration to me – Dr. David R. Hawkins, Paramahansa Yogananda, The Beatles, Thich Nhat Hanh, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky.
BH: What inspired you to start your own charity?
NB: The winter of 2014 was brutal. I was sitting in my warm suburban home, complaining about how frigid and cold it was when the news came on, showing dozens of homeless people sleeping on the streets in Code Blue extreme emergency weather conditions. I didn’t know what at the time, but I had to do something. I collected coats scarves and gloves from family and friends, my friend Linda made some peanut butter & jelly sandwiches and on a bitter Tuesday afternoon we headed down I-95 into Center City. Before long we saw a homeless man sitting on a crate. We gave him warm clothes and some sandwiches, he said “bless you” and gave us a hug. Tuesday Afternoon Philly Outreach was born, and we continue the tradition every Tuesday.
BH: Which of your achievements are you most proud of?
NB: My two sons, Zachary & Alexander, and practicing “non interference” – allowing them to shine and be their own person.
BH: What has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome?
NB: My father passed away when I was 19 years old; I guess you can say my whole world fell apart. I hung out with the wrong crowd, dabbled in drugs, and even was homeless for a while. After a while I put it back together again and moved on. The victim mentality is not something that I choose to be a part of. We are responsible for everything that happens to us, it’s our choice.
BH: What is the biggest accomplishment that you’d like to achieve over the next 5 years?
NB: We’ve recently partnered with the UnitedEmergency Services Fund (UESF) Homeless Veterans Outreach Program, which is the recipient of a Federal Grant as part of President Obama’s initiative to get all homeless veterans off the streets within the next five years. No one who has served our country should be homeless; it’s a travesty. I plan to be part of the solution and help make it happen.
BH: How do you think your friends & coworkers would describe you?
NB: Nancy “gets things done.”
BH: Where’s your favorite place to go in Bucks County?
NB: A perfect day for me is a Sunday afternoon drive with my husband Barry in Bucks County enjoying the fall foliage, then shopping, antiquing and dining in New Hope.
BH: If you could go back in time and talk to yourself ten years ago, what advice would you give?
NB: “No one goes to their grave wishing they had worked harder. Relax and have fun, do what gives you joy. The best is yet to be – better than you could ever imagine.”
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Movers & Shakers – Local Happenings Media Publishers searched for community members who achieved something big; those individuals that dared to make a difference – whether in the community, career, politics, the arts, their families or any other facet of life.
A third party panel of judges reviewed the nominations and chose the Top “Movers and Shakers” of 2014 in each market. Winners will be spotlighted online with exclusive interviews in regional Happenings Media digital magazines this fall.
Happenings Media is a network of over 20 digital, local lifestyle magazines with markets including Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Myrtle Beach, Brooklyn, Long Island and Miami.
For more information on Happenings Media Network: http://www.happeningsmedia.com.
Reposted from http://bucks.happeningmag.com/nancy-bragin-mover-shaker/
Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
Open the eyes of my heart
I want to see You
I want to see You
To see You high and lifted up
Shinin’ in the light of Your glory
Pour out Your power and love
As we sing holy, holy, holy
Tuesday Afternoon Philly Outreach gives out food & clothing every Tuesday afternoon 2:30 PM at 18th & Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Center City Philadelphia (in front of the Free Library) as long as supplies last. Donations are greatly needed and can be made through credit card or PayPal at https://tuesdayafternoonphillyoutreach.org/donations/ You can donate there as well to the UESF Homeless Vet Project.
Gloria In Excelsis Deo
A gentle giant passed this weekend. We would like to honor the life of Mr. Matthew Saad Muhammad, famed boxer and homelessness advocate.
Matthew first became involved with One Step Away when he found himself in the Ridge Avenue Shelter in 2010. After overcoming homelessness for the second time in his life, he became an advocate for our Knock Out Homelessness campaign. Although he is no longer with us, his spirit will live on, and we will never forget his contributions to the sport of boxing and the homeless community.
Our condolences go out to his family and friends. Matthew’s family will be having a private service, with plans for a larger memorial to accommodate his many fans and friends across the country still being made.
He served well. May his spirit soar.
Read more about Matthew Saad Muhammad’s story of redemption both in and out of the ring –
Kind of says it all.
photo: Blue Street Journal
You tell them Bernie.
You can read and support Sen. Bernie Sanders’ comprehensive veterans bill here: http://www.sanders.senate.gov/veterans/
There’s a trust issue there, and we hope to bridge the gap between the Vets and the UESF who has the funding, services and programs to help them. – Nancy Bragin of TAPO
Tuesday Afternoon Philly Outreach has partnered with UESF to launch a new program to help very low income veterans and veteran families who are homeless or at-risk of becoming homeless. “This is something we’ve wanted to do for a while now” said Nancy Bragin, founding partner of TAPO.
“This winter was brutal, with a record number Code Blue Weather Alerts. Now that it’s milder, we’re extending our Tuesday Afternoon Services to reach out to homeless vets who are coming to us for food and clothing. There is no reason for veterans who have served our country to be homeless. There’s a trust issue there, and we hope to bridge the gap between the Vets and the UESF who has the funding, services and programs to help them.”
UESF’s Veterans Programming offers a range of supportive services to help stabilize housing and help veterans acquire the resources necessary to keep them stable. Eligible veterans and veteran families can receive:
Housing-based Case Management Services
VA Benefit Assistance & Referral Legal Assistance
Temporary Financial Assistance
which may include:
* Rent and Utility Assistance
* Security Deposits
* Moving Costs
* Emergency Supply Purchases
* Child Care
UESF Veteran’s Program Now at Broad Street Ministry
UESF and TAPO will be at Broad Street Ministry, 315 S. Broad St. every Tuesday afternoon from 3 to 4:30 PM to greet Veterans.
If you are a vet or know someone in need of emergency housing services in the Philadelphia area call
UESF’S VETERAN’S HOTLINE 215-814-6888
For more information, please contact UESF’s Veterans’ Program Staff at 215-814-6888 or visit website 222.UESFacts.org
About the UESF
Since 1983, UESF has provided over $65 million of utility assistance to over 150,000 families throughout the City of Philadelphia. By focusing on the need for utility assistance as part of a larger housing stabilization issue, UESF has recently expanded its scope to assist vulnerable families with rent, mortgage and security deposits. This multi-tiered approach addresses the energy poverty problem in a more complete and holistic manner, allowing families to achieve a fresh start, and begin moving toward self-sufficiency.
Enough talk. Let’s do something.