In 2001 the Women’s Networking Forum held its semi-annual meeting at the CBRE World Conference in Las Vegas. Myra Smith spoke about a program she had started in Houston, Texas. She was delivering birthday cakes to children at a homeless shelter, one cake for each child on their birthday. She was also donating funds to support the same program at another shelter.
“We have an opportunity within the Women’s Network, to love a child, a homeless child, a child who may not know he or she is loved,” said Smith in her presentation to the Forum on that day in 2001.
Together with Lisa Konieczka, Executive Vice President; Jena Hollensteiner, Regional Marketing Director, and other members of the Women’s Network, Myra Smith helped establish Birthday Cakes for Homeless Children programs in cities such as Chicago, Denver, and Washington, D.C., among others.
The program became a part of The CBRE Foundation in 2004. In mid-year 2005 Kathleen Thompson joined the Birthday Cakes for Homeless Children Program to lead the National Committee. Kathleen works with shelters and CBRE offices organizing new Birthday Cakes programs in additional cities throughout the Americas. Since then the program has grown and served 81 shelters in 55 cities, including 32 CBRE offices currently supporting 48 shelters in 32 cities.
In 2009 CBRE and the Foundation decided to expand this program and give it a new name. Birthday Cakes and More for Homeless Children seeks to continue to establish a Birthday Cakes and More for Homeless Children Program in every city in which our employees work and live and in addition to that we would like to offer supplemental support to the shelters supported by our Birthday Cakes Programs that currently exist and that begin under our new program. There are many different needs that these shelters have over and above the support we currently provide.
The program is simple:
- A personalized birthday cake is delivered to each child at the shelter on their birthday.
- If multiple children have birthdays on the same day, multiple cakes are delivered, one for each child.
- Cakes are the same quality that you would give to your own children on their birthday.
- When a Birthday Cakes program is established at a shelter, provide information to the National Birthday Cakes and More Taskforce for support for additional programs.
Your involvement in the program can vary. Please visit the How to Get Involved page to find out just what you can do for this great program.
We need everyone’s participation if it is going to work for all of the kids!