They are everywhere you look. In every state. Every city. Every neighborhood. People who take time to serve others. They are volunteers. Givers. Philanthropists. It’s not just individuals who serve. You will see banks, grocery store chains, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, law firms, churches… and the list stretches as long as the city of Indianapolis. They donate money and time, supporting community projects and non-profit agencies, which are the life blood of our community. Non-profit service agencies change and save lives, lifting up our neighbors in times of need, crisis or struggle.
As Community Affairs Director at WTHR-TV, I have witnessed how crucial the corporate world is to the health of our community, in particular. I have profiled the compassion that flows from the boardroom to the streets. We are a better community because of people, from all walks of life, who serve. They answer an important call – a call for help from people down on their luck, struck by a health crisis, or hanging by a thread after job loss.
And when the holidays arrive, the need for help rises. I get emails from families who can’t afford Christmas, families worried about clothing and feeding their children through the holiday season and afterwards.
I wish I could personally help everyone who reaches out to me, but no one person can do it alone. It takes a community and you always answer the call. In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, “Everybody can be great because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”
You can spread love this holiday season. WTHR-TV sponsors some community service projects that could speak to your heart. You can join the Drumstick Dash on Thanksgiving morning, serving others before you prepare your holiday meal. The Drumstick Dash is a run/walk in Broad Ripple to support Wheeler Mission Ministries.
Wheeler serves the homeless and the poor with emergency shelter and temporary housing. A Wheeler spokesperson told me there is a critical need, right now, to respond to the growing problem of homeless families: fathers, mothers, and their children, out on the streets. She said it is a crisis, of such great magnitude, that it is almost impossible to meet the need. If you join the Drumstick Dash, you’re raising money to help Wheeler shelter more families who have nowhere else to turn. WTHR-TV also sponsors the United Christmas Service.
This United Way campaign raises money to give to families for food, clothing and toys during the holidays.
You can donate money, buy a WTHR-TV Sunrise cookbook at area Marsh stores to benefit United Christmas Service or adopt a family, shop for them, and deliver the gifts. I have watched the joy of a child’s smile, when we’ve placed gifts under their tree.
I believe, like so many of the wonderful givers I’ve interviewed, that it is better to give than to receive. If you believe the same, spread joy this holiday season. Donate to United Christmas Service. Join the Drumstick Dash or, support another community service campaign. Go to the Community Page of WTHR.com to learn more.