Jill Fella loves watching the “Real Housewives” reality series on Bravo, but she hates the stereotype the show creates: That women value money and wealth over everything.
So, Fella is reversing the message.
The North Wilmington stay-at-home mom started the Real Charitable Housewives of Delaware last summer and promptly gathered more than 500 dresses, bras and other clothing for women in Haiti who survived the devastating earthquake. “We collected clothes for women so they could go to church services,” Fella says. “We’re just out there trying to help the community and make the world a better place.”
A year later, the women’s work continues to boost charities and nonprofits of all shapes and sizes. The all-volunteer group, which includes moms, divorcees and women from various professions, organizes events to help raise funds or collect goods for charities.
Events, held monthly, have included the Help Japan Bloom Again silent auction at Pizza by Elizabeths, where 75 attendees raised $3,300, and a coat drive that collected 250 coats for Friendship House’s Clothing Bank of Delaware. Fella notes that Real Housewives does not take money or handle donations, rather representatives from charities serve that role. Sister groups have formed in Orlando, Seattle and Anchorage, Alaska.
“My ultimate goal is to have representation in each state in the country,” Fella says. “We want to get people motivated to do more.” —Drew Ostroski