Not when it comes to trying to help someone else, anyway.
And neither is her new partner, whose talents will help a group of women and children she has plenty in common with.
Talladega’s Rainbow Mountain Moms founder Donnelle Proctor has been offering her non-profit group for single moms since 2000 now, and along the way, the group has reached hundreds of single mothers with assistance that reaches across the board.
Always on the lookout for ways to extend the group’s reach, Proctor happened to read a newspaper article about a certain someone she felt could help her Rainbow Mountain Moms.
The article told about quilter Adrienne Slater, whose quilting talents were being shown at Heritage Hall Museum in Talladega.
Proctor loves the art of quilting, though she quickly says she could never do it, and got a brainstorm.
She wanted to attend the exhibit, but also wanted to approach Slater about a special project.
She never dreamed how quickly it would all come together.
Proctor found Slater at the exhibit, along with an open ear and a hand ready to help.
Now, Proctor’s group has one of Slater’s creations to help raise funds for Rainbow Mountain Moms, which like other nonprofits, is always searching for a way to provide their services.
“She didn’t even hesitate when I asked her about donating a quilt for us,” Proctor said.
“I just happened to have one I had finished that I had used as a teaching tool,” Slater said. “It was just hanging in the closet.”
While Slater says she isn’t really one interested in selling her work, having it used to help a group like Rainbow Mountain Moms was a different story.
“I really didn’t want to sell my work,” she said. “But we started talking about Rainbow Mountain Moms and having been a single mother, too, I wanted to help make as much as possible available to these moms.”
As a single mother herself, Slater said she didn’t have a group like Proctor’s to help, and there wasn’t a lot in the way of family support for her, either.
“I just know that this is a great need,” Slater said.
Proctor, too, was a single mother a generation ago, a time when outreach for single parents didn’t offer many options.
That’s how she came to form Rainbow Mountain Moms 13 years ago, after realizing the need.
“I was driven to it by the Lord, pure and simple,” she said. “I was lamenting the fact that there wasn’t a ladies’ group in place at my church,” she said. “In my mind, I heard the Lord say,’start one…’”
Proctor said she had her doubts about the challenge.
“What did I know?” Proctor said she asked herself. “I was a riding instructor and a teacher.”
But Proctor’s skills transferred over easily to the task, and 13 years later, Rainbow Mountain Moms is still going strong.
Proctor works to offer camaraderie and support for members, and also lots of practical hands on advice she believes the moms need.
“We try to bring in speakers who can help with finances, nutrition and health, parenting and for legal issues, too,” she said. “Advice for people working through legal issues is probably one of our biggest needs, but these are all important for us.”
Rainbow Mountain Moms holds monthly meetings at the Knoxville Homes recreation room, and there’s no fee to take part.
Special events such as family outings and other activities are arranged according to members’ schedules.
Any single mom may join and simply needs to contact Proctor at 256-362-9100.
Support for the program is welcome in all forms, from tax deductible contributions to in-kind services and programs.
Rainbow Mountain Moms is supported mainly by fundraisers and donations, along with occasional grant funding from the National Christian Foundation and from the Chattanooga Community Christian Foundation.
The group is overseen by a local leadership team and does receive assistance from some of the area’s civic groups and churches, Proctor said.
Slater’s quilt will be the source of a new fundraiser for the group, which will start offering chances to win the piece this weekend, setting up Friday and Saturday at the Talladega Wal-Mart.
Offers for earning the quilt are $3 each or two tickets for $5. A drawing will be held for the quilt Dec. 20 and the winner will be notified, Proctor said.
The group will also host a big yard sale Oct. 26 at Christ Deliverance Christian Center on Alabama 21, starting at 7 a.m. through the mid-afternoon.
Those who may have items to donate may call Proctor to arrange to have the items in the sale.
Charlotte Dickerson is a member of “the Moms,” and so is her daughter.
“When I met Donelle, I was so happy,” Dickerson said.
“She helps us with so many different topics, and it has helped me bring peace into my own family.”
Proctor said seeing that Rainbow Mountain Moms is now passing on to another generation of moms has been most gratifying.
Now, it’s going to the grandchildren,” she said.
Proctor said the core group of members numbers from about 15 to 20 on average.
“Through the years now, we’ve had several hundred now,” she said.
Members come from the Talladega area, and also from surrounding areas such as Anniston, Oxford, Pell City and Sylacauga, she said.
A primary goal for Rainbow Mountain Moms is getting across the message that “You’re not all by yourself,” Proctor said. “Our goal is to help single moms help their children and help each other as well.”
About Slater’s donation, Proctor said, “We’re so grateful to have this quilt from Adrienne. We’re small in numbers, so this is really helpful for us.”