JRP Volunteer Helps Theater Group Build Board Capacity

Flights of Fantasy Story Theater has been engaging elementary school children in the wonder of words through storytelling and theater for 16 years. They also perform story theater in libraries and at festivals and offer an early literacy readiness project for preschoolers, professional development for teachers and a Read Aloud Workshop for parents. “Our workshops offer students an opportunity to learn in new ways using theater techniques. It develops self confidence and builds communication and problem solving skills,” founder Lorrie Oshatz explains.  “Many of these kids are English second language learners. To see them think and respond in a language that isn’t their own is so exciting.”

Flights of Fantasy staff bring literature alive for children.

This impressive array of educational offerings is not the well-funded endeavor of a major theater group or a big corporation but rather the two-woman show of wonder women Lorrie Oshatz and Theresa Amy.  Between them, they create, read, act, market, write grants, manage and coordinate – a job Lorrie lovingly says takes about 24 hours a day.

Lorrie said when Jericho Road Pasadena reached out to offer some help, it was a very good day. And it was an even better day when JRP matched Flights of Fantasy with Judy Plunkett, who is practically a rock star in the volunteer world. Judy has served on
nonprofit boards at the local, regional and national levels, and has been the executive director of a nonprofit. “I have had the luxury of many different perspectives and can empathize with the challenges Lorrie faces,” Judy said.

Judy, who directs The Huntington’s Society of Fellows, developing programs to include and engage their donors, is helping Lorrie develop her board of directors so they understand how important their role is in sustaining Flights of Fantasy outside of board meetings. The goal is to enable board members to assist with marketing and fundraising. Judy says, “Jericho Road is very focused, and there is a lot of customizing to make each match really purposeful. As a volunteer, I feel so fortunate because this is what I love to do!”

For more information about Flights of Fantasy Story Theater and how you can arrange a performance at your child’s school, go to www.flightsoffantasy.org or call Lorrie at 818-353-0975.

Judy Plunkett has come full circle working at The Huntington. Her father served briefly as its president when she was small, and it has always been an important part of her heritage. Now she passes his photo on the wall every morning as she comes to work.

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