CORAL SPRINGS, FL – Back in 2001, Rachel Ramjattan volunteered to organize a musical at Coral Springs Center for The Arts whose proceeds helped fund homes for poor disabled and elderly people around the world.
For the Coral Springs mother of three and technology professional, the show “Jesus 2000” turned out to be a lot more than an opportunity to give back to a worthy cause.
The contacts she made volunteering landed her a job with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Miami and started her on a new path in life to help connect donors to charities across the nation.
Or, as she describes her work: “I’m inspired to help people use their talents to help others, so they can change the world.”
In June, Ramjattan published the print edition of her book on fundraising, “No More Duct Tape Fundraising: The Nonprofit Leader's Guide to Becoming an Inspirational Fundraiser.” She also did a webinar earlier this month for Coral Springs-Coconut Creek Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Chamber For Good group, offering strategies to local nonprofits on raising funds during the pandemic.
“We’re not here to live for ourselves,” she said in a recent interview at her home in Eagle Trace. “When you know your ‘why?,’ you’ll know your mission and will stop at nothing to get it.”
Over the years, the 50-year-old self-described optimist with high energy has helped more than 500 charities, including those in Broward County, raise millions of dollars.
Ramjattan found her passion to work with nonprofits and developed her skills in the field while raising three children in Coral Springs.
Her oldest son and youngest daughter graduated from Coral Springs Charter School and both have attended Florida International University. Her middle son is now a student at Broward College.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Ramjattan came to Florida when she was 17 and after an earlier career in the technology and manufacturing sector, she eventually settled in Coral Springs because she said it offered quality schools and the diversity she was looking for.
And, as it turned out, she launched her new career, in part, through the volunteer work she did during the musical at Coral Springs Center for The Arts.
With her children grown, she has spent much of her time traveling the country teaching nonprofit leaders how to fully fund their operations by acquiring and cultivating donors.
Now, with the pandemic, she’s working from home, doing workshops and running meetings via video conferences. She said the informality of the video calls has helped her develop closer relationships with her clients and colleagues.
“We can really get to know each other,” she said. “We don’t have to wear our business suits and we can see each other at our homes with kids popping in or pets walking in the background.”
For her, COVID-19 has given her time to reflect on who she is and how she can contribute further to helping others.
She hopes everyone does the same.
“Every crisis has its opportunities,” Ramjattan said. “I hope we don’t waste this one.”
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