Wow #SQLFamily…just wow.

The SQL Server Team has been overwhelmed by the amazing outpouring of support from the #SQLFamily. In just a few days, the community is off to a great start in sending us submissions that have raised money for the Pragmatic Works Foundation, a non-profit that provides free technical training to veterans, the jobless, and underemployed. We will donate $50 to the Foundation for each of the first 400 submissions we receive from the SQL Server community. We are off to a good start and we encourage those of you who haven’t submitted your stories so that we can reach our $20,000 contribution goal by December 31st, 2011.

We are now making it easier for you to submit your story! In addition to sending submissions via email to sqlfamilysubmission@live.com, you can now send your submission via Twitter as well on our Facebook wall. Be sure to send the tweet to @SQLServer and include the #SQLFamily hash tag in your tweet (one tweet is all it takes).When posting on our Facebook wall, please start your post with “The SQL Family…” to help us identify your submissions. If you didn’t see our first blog post in announcing this campaign, you can get all the details it here.

We truly appreciate all the stories and blog posts submitted thus far as a part of “#SQLFamily Gives Back”, as well as the tweets and blog posts helping us promote the cause. The stories have been so touching, we’re compelled to share a few excerpts with the community.

#sqlfamily

by Grant Fritchey (blog | twitter)

“After a 40 minute drink from the fire hose, I had a much better understanding of extended events, as well as several pages worth of notes and links to information I had previously missed. Why did this person do this? Because someone they knew needed some help. That’s #sqlfamily to me.

You gotta think of it like this. Technically, we’re all competing for jobs. If I know something really well and you don’t, that makes me more marketable than you so I’ll be damned if I’m going to give you a leg up for free. And there are technical communities out there that behave exactly that way. We don’t. We share. We share our knowledge, our time, our struggles, our passion. And the funny thing is, we all get better for it.”

What @SQLFamily Means to Me

By Dustin Ryan (blog | twitter)

“Since that day my life has never been the same. I won’t ever be able to thank Brian enough for giving me my shot. Because of Brian’s generosity, optimism, and faith in me, my life has changed for the better. And it’s because of Brian’s tremendous example that you can find me speaking at SQL Saturday and Code Camp events or answering questions on my blogs or the forums of BIDN.com. If I can have a fraction of the impact on someone else that Brian had in my life, then maybe in that way I can say thanks.

So that’s what #SQLFamily means to me. It means helping others because someone somewhere at some point gave you a helping hand. Whether it was a coworker who answered a question for you or someone who proofread your resume, take the time to say thanks and pay it forward to someone else who just needs a little faith, optimism, and a helping hand.”

Email Submission

From Jess Borland (blog | twitter)

“I'd like to think that I was brought into the #sqlfamily when I went to SQL Saturday #31 Chicago 2010. Until that day, I had been blogging, I was on Twitter, I was attending a user group, and I was chatting with a few local people. But attending a SQL Saturday showed me how much more I could tap into. There were, of course, the sessions, with excellent presenters; the vendors; and the volunteers. But the people I met...they have become friends and family. I no longer felt like I was on the outside of this really great group, looking in. I felt like I was truly part of the community.

I've gotten help with everything from setting up database mail to configuring clusters to data modeling tool recommendations. The #sqlfamily has cheered me on as I started new jobs and ran half marathons. They've also been there for me on bad days, when I thought there was no way a report would get written in time or a restore could be completed successfully. I wish every person that worked with SQL Server would join the family.”

Please encourage your #SQLFamily to keep the stories coming. You still have plenty of time—until December 31st—to submit a story and make a difference in someone’s life. Each submission enables Pragmatic Works to provide someone in need with the financial resources for training and hardware to start a career in the IT field. Think of it this way: your contributions can add a new member to the #SQLFamily!

Stay tuned, as next week we’ll be sharing more stories from the community. Let’s keep giving back!