Over the years I’ve been involved in a number of not-for-profit organizations. Rotary, Lions Club, Job’s Daughters, Scouting, musical organizations, political organizations, and a rock club (I’m sure there are more but they don’t currently come to mind). Over time, they all come down to some type of political/power struggle. I volunteer to do something, and later on wonder what was I thinking?
I was thinking I want to help. I want to assist their progress in some way. I want to see them succeed. How can I help? With my take-charge personality I end up the chairman, the president, the leader. I find myself pulling away from those decisions more and more. Would I be Secretary of the Rock Club. No thanks. How about the Membership Coordinator? Grant Writer? Publicity Chairperson? NO, NO and NO. I’ll help where I can, but I don’t want the board meetings, the distraction to creating, the politics.
So how can I help?
I’ve been knitting for years. As my little sign says, “knitting keeps me from unraveling”. I can create something useful and keep hands busy. I’m a much nicer passenger when I knit and don’t watch Tracy drive. I’ve gifted hundreds of blankets over the years both knit and crochet. I’ve taught both my youngest daughter and grand-daughter how to knit and they also have “busy hands”. So what do we do with all that stuff?
When we had our art/gift gallery we sold well over 100 scarves to travelers looking for something useful to offer that would remind them of their trip. Grandmothers love the scarves as gifts for grandkids. And some locals bought them on a regular basis as gifts and for their own families. But now that the store is closed what happens to them?
One day on Facebook an ad showed up for an organization called “Operation Gratitude”. They provide “Care Boxes” for our active military, veterans, first responders, and wounded warriors. They take only scarves made of acrylic fibers – check; 4-6” wide – check; in masculine colors – check. If you go to their website you can download their donation form to see all the other ways you can help. They recently had a “service day” at their base of operation in California and created 3,000 “care boxes” for the first responders in Dallas. This is an organization I want to give to.
I’ve put together a box of scarves with the labels as requested and will send them off this next week. They also ask for letters to the care box recipients. It took me a couple of weeks to figure out what to say, and how I might help take their mind off where they are. I wrote a letter using pictures from our previous time in the heart of the Grand Staircare Escalante National Monument. I hope it will give them something else to think about.
It also reminded me to add their service as volunteers to my gratitude journal. I’m grateful they believe our freedoms are worth fighting for. My grandmother, mother, father, and 1st husband all volunteered for the Marine Corps. They each had their own reason for that service, and each contributed in a unique way. They wanted to help in some way. I guess it’s in my blood.
Until next time – – –