As I put away the presents I received for Christmas and cleaned up the leftover food, I reflected on the wonderful spirit of giving I noticed in our community over the past few months.
Food was donated, cooked, delivered and served to hundreds of families for both Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Gifts were purchased and wrapped to make sure that foster kids, families in shelters, senior citizens, and others facing financial challenges had a happy holiday this year. Nearly every day, the paper reported on one or more generous donations given to a local pantry, shelter, or other charity. Generous donors paid off strangers’ layaway bills and dropped big bills in the collection kettles. There were drives for Toys for Tots, Coats for Kids, Sweaters, Boots, Heating Assistance, Pet Supplies and more.
All these efforts helped ensure that no one needed to go without a warm meal, gifts, and the knowledge that we live in a caring community. However, now the decorations are going back on the shelves for the year. I hope that this caring, giving spirit doesn’t also get shelved until the next holiday. Until the economy turns around so that everyone in Miami County can find a job that can support their family, many of our neighbors need a helping hand throughout the year.
The United Way of Miami County is helping to meet this need. But there are many nonprofit agencies in our community working year ‘round to help families increase their financial stability during these troubled times. United Way encourages everyone to Give, Advocate and Volunteer throughout the year. You can find opportunities to get involved on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/unitedwayMCO/, by calling us at 773-6786 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.