: News

Commentary By Terri Lee Freeman: The 'Year Of Giving'

Play associated audio

As families gather to give thanks and our thoughts turn to those less fortunate, commentator Terri Lee Freeman, president of The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region, suggests it's time to extend the giving season far beyond the winter holidays:

The table's been set, the relatives are on their way, so let the holidays begin!

Along with the shopping, cooking and parties this time of year, many of us feel a strong desire to help those less fortunate. It is, as they say, better to give than to receive.

There's an overwhelming need in our community and our local nonprofits depend on your support as the year draws to a close.

Economic uncertainty is profound…but with three out of 10 children in the nation's capital living in poverty, 148,000 mortgages in default, alarmingly high unemployment and deep government cuts for social and human services just around the corner, I feel both compelled and inspired to launch a new campaign. One that extends the giving season far beyond the holidays.

I declare 2011 to be the Year of Giving.

Next year's challenges will be greater than any we've experienced. They'll demand that we renew our commitment to our neighbors in need.

With the first snow storm, we must support hypothermia shelters that shield our homeless brothers and sisters from the harshest winter months.

In the spring, let's remember the region's free clinics that provide uninsured families with inhalers and allergy medications that can mean the difference between life and death.

While it is particularly awful to face the prospect of eviction in the winter cold, it is equally so in the brutal heat of a D.C. summer.

And let's not forget children who receive free or reduced lunches during the school year. Backpacks provided by local nonprofits and filled with healthy food mean our children won't go to bed hungry -- winter, spring, summer or fall. Those same children depend on us for warm coats when the days grow shorter and the nights grow colder.

While many view the holidays as the time of greatest need for our neighbors living in poverty, they need us all year long because domestic violence, foreclosures and hunger know no season.

Please join The Community Foundation in supporting our neighbors in need and strengthening the local safety net this month, next month and throughout 2011 and beyond.

What do you think? Join The Conversation and contribute to the Commentary Forum.

NPR

Giving Some Rope: A Brief History Of Tensions Between Politicians And The Press

Hillary Clinton's campaign took the term "wrangling the press" literally when it used a rope to control reporters. She and other candidates have a long history of frustration with the Fourth Estate.
NPR

Mechanization Brings Quick Change To Borneo Region Known For 'Slow Rice'

A company is introducing mechanized rice farming to the interior of Malaysian Borneo for the first time. Scientists say the change may damage the bonds between the local people and their environment.
WAMU 88.5

Presidential Candidates Grapple With Tough Ballot Requirements In Virginia

In Virginia, candidates running for president are scrambling to determine how to get on the ballot, or if it's even worth the hassle. That's because the Commonwealth has some of the strictest requirements in the nation.
NPR

Hacking Team Breach Reveals Firm Sold Spying Tools To Repressive Regimes

What happens when one of the most notorious hacking companies gets hacked? That's the situation unfolding for one Italian company, which sells surveillance software to governments across the globe.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.