Giving is second nature to me, thanks to my Mama. She frequently volunteered at church, either helping with events or knitting baby booties, lending neighbors a hand and best of all, despite a bit of sternness, always glowed with love every time she looked at us kids. She gave us her greatest gift, the gift of love in a simple and yet unforgettable smile. Not sure where those booties all went, I am going to have to ask my sister, Marianne.
A few months ago, a friend and colleague at the office told me about a charter non-profit called 100Ada . Modeled after the giving circle concept, members give a certain amount of money annually. The funds are allocated to small or micro non-profit organizations that have a measurable impact in Ada County, and the selection process is by nomination by members only. In the Fall, they hold an event so that each non-profit can make a four-minute presentation to pitch their mission. The membership votes and the result is a generous gift to that local charity. In other cities that have the same model, often others donate more on the event evening. The best part is that all the charities get to tell their story. It’s a win-win no matter what because it also raises appreciation of each organization that we may not have been aware of.
This year Surel’s Place was nominated by yours truly for the Arts & Humanities category. Surel’s Place is an artist in residence program in Garden City’s Surel Mitchell Live Work Create District, which stretches from 32nd Street to 37th Street. On September 22nd when we present how Surel’s Place makes a difference in our community, I will have that same glowing smile my Mama showed us that without saying a word, says it all.
Another interesting group I found to become involved in is called GoodWell . This organization has four questions on their home page that convinced me to become a member:
- Would you knowingly buy a product made with child labor?
- Would you knowingly buy from a company who discriminates based on gender, age, religion, race or sexual orientation?
- Would you knowingly buy from a company who pays their CEO over 100 times what the average worker makes at that company?
- Would you knowingly support a company who is destroying the environment?
Right, I thought so. I do not want to support companies or corporations that engage in any of those practices. The companies that GoodWell supports are certified through a rigorous process and must maintain their status through annual audits of practice.
I just gave you two great ideas on how you can give to your community or to our planet in meaningful ways. Go for it. It’s that smile that will win you over. It’s my challenge to you to find something you can find a way to make a difference, no matter the commitment. You can do it.
#Community #Giving #Generosity #100Ada #GoodWell
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