Sunday, December 13, 2015

Cali Brooks: Feel Good About Giving

Adirondack GivesThe Adirondack region has over 750 nonprofit organizations listed with New York’s Department of State. This group, as a whole, does a number of things daily that touch all of our lives. Some organizations are protecting our life-sustaining environment for the future; many others are helping our youth grow up to be strong, responsible, contributing members of our community; some deal with the horrors of domestic abuse of women and children; and several agencies help those near the end of their lives.

In the small towns that make up most of the Adirondack region, the nonprofit sector is best represented by the people. When you give to a charity, an organization, or even an institution, what you’re really doing is supporting the people that make it tick.

When you give to the Tri-Lakes Humane Society, you’re helping Lena Bombard and her dedicated staff and volunteers do what they do best: protect and help our furry friends. When you give to High Peaks Hospice, you help people like Heather Borachok and Michelle Rushby coordinate the best possible care for their patients. Your gift to the United Way of the Adirondack Region is stewarded by people like John Bernardi and Kathy Snow, who care deeply about lifting up the human services in our communities. A donation to Paul Smith’s College helps ensure that Dr. Curt Stager can keep providing a top-notch education to future generations.

A gift to The Y’s Bright Beginnings program means Jacqueline Prather and her team can take care of the youngest among us. A gift to the Barnabas House in Malone helps Lee Rivers and Community Connections focus on finding shelter for the homeless. When you give to PRIDE of Ticonderoga, you’re helping the staff and volunteers invest in the community’s future. Your donations help the dedicated volunteers at the Adirondack Community Outreach Center provide clothing, food, mentoring, and many other services in North Creek and Johnsburg. A gift to the Indian Lake Library means Nancy Berkowitz and her team can operate an excellent community resource for residents of Hamilton County.

I could go on and on. I hope you will look within your own community to see the many and increasing needs that require our attention — even as we remain vigilant about needs elsewhere. With issues like family economic instability and costs of living increases, many more people will need support in the coming months, and perhaps years.

Our charitable dollars can have a direct and often immediate impact on helping people meet basic needs. If the economy is affecting those of us fortunate enough not to think about putting food on our table, then imagine the impact it’s having on those who almost always need to think about the source of their next meal or rent check.

Make giving back a family affair by involving children, parents, siblings and others in your giving decisions. Consider making a financial gift or volunteering your time for a local charity.

Consider contacting Adirondack Foundation to discuss how they can help you give back or visit to make an immediate impact today.

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Cali Brooks is president & CEO of Adirondack Foundation. After working with nonprofit organizations in Southeast Asia, Central America, and the United States, Cali returned home to the Adirondacks and worked for the HKH Foundation where she conducted a survey to assess the economic, social, cultural, and environmental strengths of the Adirondack region. She then joined the Public Affairs office of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and co-founded the Wildlife Conservation Society's Adirondack Communities and Conservation Program. She and her family live in and love the Adirondacks.

3 Responses

  1. Excellent piece of writing Cali. Giving is the glue that holds a society together. The more we give our time, money and love to the community around us the stronger we become as a people and more humane as a nation. Thank-you for writing this compelling piece, Cali and have a beautiful holiday season with your family.

  2. Ethan Friedman says:

    Thanks for this Cali. Great piece.

  3. Wally Elton says:

    I hope many read this and consider the opportunities to help, whether in the Adirondacks or elsewhere. I don’t live in the Adirondacks, though not far away, but have supported the foundation because I like to visit there often.

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