Sarah A. Tyndall
Boxes of Basics, Haymarket / Info@BoxesofBasics.org / BoxesofBasics.org
Why did you decide to start your own nonprofit?
A few years ago, I had the opportunity to help a mother of four. She was in need of clothing for her children. I reached out to friends and neighbors and before I knew it, I had enough clothes to fill my SUV twice! I realized there are lots of families who could benefit from receiving quality clothing, and there are lots of people eager to give.
How does Boxes of Basics serve the local community?
We provide local children in need with a box of new and gently used clothing in their size. Each box contains an entire seasonal wardrobe: five school outfits, three play outfits, one Sunday “best” outfit, three pairs of pajamas, a jacket, new socks and underwear. Clothing donations are collected from the community, and volunteers sort and pack each box, wrapping each outfit individually so the child feels like they’re opening a gift when they receive their box.
Please share one of the greatest moments you’ve experienced in your current profession?
It’s rare that I actually get to meet a recipient of a Box of Basics, but one time a recipient contacted me and I got to sit down with this mother, hear her story and listen to how receiving Boxes of Basics for her three children made a difference in her life. It was a profound experience for me.
Tell us about you experience with HGBA.
I’m a new member and have already benefited from my membership. Other members are so supportive and willing to lend a hand, and several have connected me to other people in the community that have supported Boxes of Basics.
What are the top three business tips you can offer other professionals?
Be brave. Starting a new venture is scary, but you have to put yourself and your ideas out there.
Gather the facts. Before making a decision or jumping to a conclusion make sure you gather all of the facts.
Practice grace and patience. Life and business present us with challenging situations. Anytime I find myself annoyed or bothered, I tell myself that this is the perfect opportunity to practice grace and patience.
Are you from this area? If not, what brought you here and what do you like about our town?
I’m originally from Richmond, but have lived in Northern Virginia for over 15 years. I love where I live. We’re close enough to Washington D.C. that we can take advantage of everything it has to offer, but in Haymarket, it’s like living in a small town.
What are some hobbies you enjoy?
I love spending time with my family, exploring new places locally and traveling. I also love reading and any activity near or on the water.
Are you involved with any other nonprofits?
Boxes of Basics has the pleasure of supporting the missions of other area nonprofits. Carried to Full Term, House of Mercy, Sweet Julia Grace and Phillips Programs for Families and Children are just a few.
What was your first, or most interesting job, prior to your current position?
I met my husband while working as a lifeguard in high school. He bet I couldn’t save him if he sank to the bottom of the diving well. I took the challenge, “saved” him and we’ve been married almost 15 years.