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Fundraising makes direct impact on children

Love for niece inspires Development Coordinator

“My niece Claire was born prematurely at 29 weeks and weighed only 2 lbs. and 6 oz.,” said Kelsi Hinshaw, Development Coordinator. “It was such a scary time for my brother and sister in-law. Rainbows came to the NICU to visit them and explained all of the services that would be available to them if needed. It was my first exposure to Rainbows and to the important services provided to families when they need them most.”

A year later, Kelsi joined the Rainbows’ team. “I knew working at Rainbows would make a direct impact on children like my niece and would be fulfilling and rewarding to me personally,” she said. Kelsi earned her Bachelor of Arts in Integrated Marketing Communications from Wichita State University and brings previous experience in development that includes serving as Development Director for Sumner Regional Medical Center Endowment Foundation.

Kelsi had the opportunity to attend InterHab’s Annual Art & Awards Ceremony where one of Rainbows’ teens was awarded the Outstanding Youth Award in 2021. There were a number of award winners and each of their stories were shared. “It was such an emotional and moving experience to witness,” said Kelsi. “It was a wonderful reminder and reinforcement of why Rainbows and other similar agencies are so important and impactful on the people they serve. I was extremely grateful to be a part of the Rainbows’ organization.”

As the Development Coordinator, Kelsi is responsible for Rainbows’ special events, including Peter Hampel’s Luau, Blarney Breakfast and Fashion Passion. “My biggest achievement to date, was having the opportunity to be a part of the 2021 Fashion Passion,” said Kelsi. “We were able to raise almost $900,000 for the children and families of Rainbows. It was such a rewarding experience and a great achievement and I am proud to have contributed to the event.”

No work day is ever the same for the Development Coordinator. One day Kelsi may be speaking with donors about possible sponsorship opportunities or coordinating committee meetings for an upcoming event, and the next day she may be calculating how many ounces of Chex mix will fit in a snack box for a table setting. Other days, Kelsi is on the computer budgeting, forecasting, analyzing and reporting financials.

“My favorite parts of the job are the relationships I have been able to build with Rainbows’ staff, volunteers, donors and partners,” said Kelsi.

Kelsi spends most of her free time cheering on her two children, Banks and Addison, from the stands. Both Banks and Addie are very involved with Wellington High School sports, and now are also involved with volunteering at Rainbows.

Kelsi enjoys reading, likes to travel and experience new places, and loves coming home to fur babies Gracie and Ellie. “I won’t turn down an opportunity to listen to live music,” she said, “but my most favorite thing to do in the world is to laugh with my family.”