Hello all! 

I love working for CHARITYSMITH: National Society of Memorial Funds and I am continually impacted by the stories of beautiful lives lived fully. I am also moved by the desire and strength of those left behind to carry a loved one’s memory and legacy with them into the future in a positive, world-changing way. We live in a society where it is all too common to not talk about things that are painful, sad, or tragic. I feel blessed to be on the opposite side of things where I am reminded daily of the healing power of building something beautiful out of a situation that from the outside looks like nothing but heartbreak. I often see quotes that I feel reflect this –

“The wound is the place where the Light enters you” – Rumi – 

Joe Leslie Rock It Forward BannerThe Joe Leslie Rock it Forward Fund hosts an annual concert to pay for youth music lessons in the St. Louis, MO area (www.rockitforward2014.com)

Jonathan Moules Memorial Steps4Hope Foundationwww.jonathanmoulessteps4hope.org hosts multiple fundraisers annually including a 5k to raise money to help those fighting addiction and to raise awareness for this disease.


The inspiring friends & family who choose to use CHARITYSMITH as a platform for building a memorial fund face many difficult tasks. We must speak and write our lost loved one’s names regularly in the fund creation & administration process which often immediately follows their passing. The difficulty of this process can’t be put into words, but when you’re in it, it’s all you have to move you forward. One foot in front of the other. You cry when the website goes up and you see your loved one’s smile, but something keeps you moving forward. Through personal experience I know that all of this is extremely difficult and bittersweet but I believe the desire to help others is ultimately what prevails.

Throughout the fund creation process and continuation there is an amazing healing that takes place that I can never find a way to put into words. It doesn’t make you stop missing “your person”, or stop crying when you have a memory so strong you have to drop everything and just wait it out. The memorial fund itself can be a tool for getting through the darkest moments. Presenting a scholarship to a deserving student with money raised in a loved one’s name has a healing impact. So does making a charitable contribution in someone’s name. These acts of kindness change lives and make this world a better place to be for awhile.

jmcoubrie-6One of our fund administrators (www.aaronpastormemorialfund.org) presents a scholarship to a deserving student in her son’s name.


When I think of my brother, I try to also think of a way that we (my family) can use the memorial fund to positively impact a life here on Earth. I feel like I owe it to him and his memory to keep making people smile, even after he has left our physical world. This feeling of giving in his name makes him seem so nearby and that is a powerful, powerful emotion.

1544950_280064202148623_510933098_nwww.facebook.com/smileonadg

“On the death of a friend, we should consider that the fates through confidence have devolved on us the task of a double living, that we have henceforth to fulfill the promise of our friend’s life also, in our own, to the world.” – Henry David Thoreau –

Thanks for reading,

Ashley G.
Executive Director
CHARITYSMITH Nonprofit Foundation