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  • Writer's picturePayton Beims

"Why Is It Called Cardinal?"

by Payton Beims


Ever since The Cardinal Initiative's conception, I have been asked why I chose the Cardinal as the mascot of the organization. There are a few reasons for this and perhaps explaining it will help everyone understand the decision a little better.

First, the lore behind sighting a cardinal. If you google "what does seeing a cardinal mean," a list will appear with different definitions of what seeing the bird means according to multiple beliefs and cultures. All of which are beneficial to the spotter.

Growing up, I had always been told the cardinal is a message from a departed loved one, or that someone who has departed is watching over me. My late grandmother, Peach was the source of this knowledge. Since her passing, my family has taken to believing every cardinal we see is Nan stopping by to say hello. Other than that, some cultures believe the bird is a sign of good luck, or good fortune. I have heard it said that the cardinal appears when you are in need of help.

These definitions and beliefs are the basis on which I chose The Cardinal Initiative's name. Not only what the bird itself represents, but also because it was Peach's favorite bird.

Anyone who knew her will tell you she was the poster child of what a good person should be. She was charitable, kind, and always in the mood to make someone's day better... whether

she meant to or not. Cardinal was built primarily in her image. Though many may not know who she was, my ambition is to see her capacity for helping people feel better live on.


The Logo

Now that I've explained the origins of the name, perhaps now it will be a little easier to explain the logo.

I have found it rather amusing to hear what people interpret our symbol to be. One time, I was told it looked like a chess board with a "unique" color scheme.

Rather, it is simply an abstract version of a cardinal facing forward. My inspiration was to take the meaning behind seeing a cardinal and bestow it on whomever seeks our services. Or, by seeing a cardinal look at you, people can rest assured that help is there when they need it.


I hope this explanation has helped you to understand Cardinal's origins and what inspired its creation. I hope the next time you see a cardinal you feel a sense of relief given what the bird symbolizes. If you're like me, you notice cardinals all the time. Seeking the good things in life can be hard if you don't know what to look for.

“May you come to find comfort in and remember- cardinals appear when angels are near. So go now, sit outside and drink your tea. Keep a lookout for the little red bird – it is there, your loved ones will be.” - Victoria McGovern

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