Last week when the temperature was in the 20s, I gave a ride to a woman with six children who were walking off the interstate, having been put out of the car by her husband. She tearfully explained they had moved here several months ago for her husband’s new job, but things weren’t going well. She was reluctant for me to call the police, because she did not have custody of all of the children and feared they would be separated in various foster homes. As she softly spoke, the children, probably aged five to fourteen, sat in complete silence, stunned by what had just occurred and by what their future held. Staring down at her crumpled tissue, she quietly voiced, “I don’t know what to do. I don’t know where to go. We have always had a home. Here it is Christmas, and I don’t even have a place for my family to live.”
I have no doubt why I was put in her path that day. Thankfully, with our network of agencies, we have help for her and her children. With our focus on collaborative impact, we help to prevent more people from finding themselves in equally terrifying situations. Rarely does someone need the help and service of just one agency or program. By investing in a network of 34 programs, United Way of Southeast Missouri supports those with immediate need, while helping to create lifelong change that reduces the need. When you invest in United Way, you create change that truly can change a person’s life.
As you count your blessings this time of year, think of those who are frightened and fearing their future. If you invest even a small percentage of what you will spend on throwaway toys and meaningless video games, you just might change a life.
Doing good also benefits the giver in many ways—emotionally, spiritually, some studies even show improved heart health. Here are some financial reasons that may be especially timely for those in need of year-end tax benefits:
- A charitable gift can help you move to or remain in a lower tax bracket.
- A donation of stock will help you avoid taxes on capital gains, and you can receive a charitable deduction for the full fair market value of the stock at the time of your gift.
- Most importantly, you will help others (and probably yourself) during a season that is all about giving.
We thank you for your support of our organization and our community. We hope as you make your resolutions for the new year, you will remember your gifts of time and talent are equally valuable and appreciated. Click here for details on specific opportunities to Give, Advocate, Volunteer.
We wish you and yours the blessings too many families do not have: a warm home, a steady income, good health, and above all, hope for a brighter new year.