This last weekend made me think back to the Thanksgiving of 1985. I was a mother of two young children, twenty-seven hundred miles from home, no family nearby, all of my friends were going out of town for the holiday. I felt horrible. Then I saw an article in the Killeen Daily Herald that read a local soup kitchen was in desperate need of help for Thanksgiving Day. But I had little ones. And I worked. And I was going to school. And emotionally I was a wreck. What did I have to offer? But I thought if I was around people who had it rougher than me, I’d feel better about my lot in life. So, I called. I figured they would say, “thanks, but no thanks”. To my surprise, they asked if I could be there at 8:00 am. “We need as many hands as possible! And we have a playroom for the babies”. That day, I met so many people, not just the bums and druggies I thought I’d see but nice average families who were just having a rough time financially. I left there feeling so warm inside, rejuvenated emotionally, especially after seeing my four-year-old serving rolls to the guests.
Afterwards, I was reminded of what President Kennedy said in his inauguration speech January 20, 1961, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country”. We all have something that we can share or do for a worthy cause. Giving is not hard and can be very rewarding. Currently, I work for your public television and radio stations here in Killeen, organizations that rely on the generosity of the public. Like other non-profits nationwide, we have seen fewer donations in the last year and have felt the pinch. In fact, a country is measured by the way it treats those most in need. Therefore, we all should be giving something to a cause we feel is worthy, be it money, things or time. Tonight, I’m going to spell out the problem charities face right now, then tell you what caused the problem and finally let you know how you can help and be part of the solution.
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