In the spirit of the upcoming holidays, I’ve been thinking a lot about giving.
Due to my line of work, I am privy to a first-hand look at how the holidays are often far from joyous for many people. Too many kids wake up on Christmas morning and have no gift. Too many people need shelter and a warm meal. Too many people are lonely and want some company. Too many people are hungry and want to provide a special meal for their family. All of us are likely worried about the economy and the future. I know I am. But when I think about the men and women who struggle to find adequate shelter in the cold rain, the children who move from foster home to foster home never knowing what “home” is, the elderly who have no one to visit them, or the sick who are stuck in the hospital, I can’t NOT do something. It can be as simple as donating a bag of groceries to signing up to serve food at a shelter to buying a gift for a child in need. These gestures might feel small but to someone else? They are big.
Times are tough right now and in my circle of most beloved people, many are struggling to make ends meet. Everyone is pinching pennies and being cautious when it comes to money. So, I’m leveling the playing field. Instead of buying gifts for everyone, I am going to invite my loved ones to volunteer with me or I will donate money to charity in their name. I’ve already lined up two volunteer opportunities and am looking for others. Sharing our time in an effort to help others will be more meaningful than getting a new cd or necklace.
This is not a cop out to avoid shopping and spending. I’ve given this a lot of thought. I want to get back to the true meaning of the holidays which to me is, spreading joy and sharing my wealth. My wealth has never been in my bank account but in my heart.
If you have suggestions of volunteer opportunities or organizations to donate to, I’m open to suggestions. Or if you’re volunteering or donating, I’d love to know.
I’ll keep you posted on my progress.