Gratitude by definition is: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
This November, I have joined many others on Facebook by posting a daily gratitude post. Now on day 25 of this practice, I am finding it uplifting to write my post and look forward to reading the posts of my family and close friends. Beginning each day with a feeling of gratitude has been energizing.
But as grateful as I might be for the simple things in life such as heat, a roof over my head, love of family, faith, safety, and a career that I love, I know that so many others in our community do not have these basics. While people obsess about the retail frenzy of Black Friday, many others are just trying to stay warm or trying to find safety. We live in a world of stark contrasts.
For those of us who have our basic needs met on a daily basis, I hope that we can all find the simple gratitude for “having enough”. And turn that into giving back vs wanting more. Let’s all set aside some time and some money to continue to support those in the most need.
HAVEN, like many other area non-profits, can use your help so we can in turn help others. In the next few weeks and months consider how you might be able to help. Here are five things that you can do right now.
- Make a financial contribution. Over half of our annual budget comes directly from the local community. Donate now or plan to donate on #Giving Tuesday, December 3.
- Share your skills and talents via volunteerism. Over 100 individuals donate their time to HAVEN each year. Click for volunteer opportunities.
- Donate items from our current needs list. From one item to many items, these donated goods make a big difference in the daily lives of those we serve and a positive impact on our budget! Or consider supporting our annual Gift Giveaway.
- Educate yourself about the crimes of sexual and domestic violence. Share your knowledge with others, you might just save a life! Make time in the upcoming year to attend a HAVEN training opportunity to continue to learn more.
- Be an ambassador for change. Speak up about misogyny, oppression, objectification of women and girls. Be a voice for others who have been silenced.
As we give thanks this weekend, keep these beautiful words of Maya Angelou in mind…
“When we cast our bread upon the waters, we can presume that someone downstream whose face we may never see will benefit from our actions, even as we enjoy the gifts sent to us from a donor upstream.”