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Everyday Hero

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With so much tragedy happening in the world today it’s hard not to be paralyzed by your fears and feelings of wanting to help. Personally, I’ve found the best way to get through it all is to feel it, cry, grieve, support the causes important to me and to figure out a way to live my best life through being a good person and giving back. Teaching my girls to do the same and actually seeing them give back is also something that gives me hope.

Traditionally we haven’t used our social channels as a platform for this type of discussion. I feel like it’s hard to articulate how I, and we as a team/company are feeling about this current round of natural disasters and hate filled incidents and the havoc they have left behind. It's too much to bare witness to without saying something. We want our blog to be a happy place for people to escape but also someplace to visit for ideas about where to find the good in the world. 

I feel my best effort always starts with talking/teaching at home with my kids today and everyday.  I always remind them to be kind, have empathy, be inclusive, be generous of time and resources, accepting. . . These are the values/traits we have instilled in our girls from a very young age, but on going reminders and discussions are powerful and important. I was reading a mama blog recently and the author said it’s not enough to tell our children to be this way we have to teach by example. Which seems obvious but sometimes we forget - be inclusive with adults, kind to all, lend a helping hand. Kindness goes such a long way. . . maybe it could steer a troubled adult on the right path, I’d like to think that. And our children see every move we make and absorb it all into the person they are becoming.

When Hurricane Harvey hit Houston we immediately reached out to Good + Foundation (goodplusfoundation.org) We have worked with them for years and know what a strong partner they are to have. Sometimes it’s hard to know where to give that will have the most impact. They always give us comfort in knowing that through their partners on the ground they are lending support to those who need help most immediately. 

Instead of just donating clothes (which we do on an ongoing basis with them) it was our Amagansett manager Alexandra who said, let’s do something in the stores with our communities, let’s get the kids involved. So as a team we decided to have a card making event where kids could come and create cards to send hope and support to those families needing it. We also donated a percentage of sales that day.

Here are some suggestions for helping with the recovery efforts in Florida, Houston, Puerto Rico, Mexico and California.

https://www.directrelief.org/

 

A medical relief nonprofit ranked No. 1 on Charity Navigator's list of the 10 best charities in the U.S., among Fast Company's 10 most innovative NGOs.

 

https://www.ny.gov/programs/empire-state-relief-and-recovery-effort-puerto-rico

 

Following his visit to Puerto Rico to deliver emergency supplies and see firsthand the widespread damage and devastation from Hurricane Maria, Governor Cuomo launched ...

 

Our friends at Every Mother Counts also just directed an emergency grant to Circle of Health International (cohintl.org) that will help mothers and children get the help they desperately need in Puerto Rico. Circle of Health is also raising funds to help those people who’s homes and livelihoods have been destroyed by the fires in Northern California. 

Lastly, Humble Design (humbledesign.org) is an organization that I really love. Although they are not helping with immediate disaster relief they are committed to lifting up people who need our support every day.  What they do touched me so deeply that upon reading about them (in the newspaper on the subway to work) I was immediately moved to help. It’s that easy to be inspired! You can read everything about them in a post I wrote back in April. The short of it is, through donations they completely outfit a home (soup to nuts) for a family transitioning out of homelessness. This generous act makes that family’s likelihood of returning to homelessness drop down to an astonishing 1%.

These are just some suggestions of places to look to be a hero everyday. Your children’s schools, your houses of worship, your book club, even your local firehouse or police precinct - these are all places from which to draw ideas and strength. I think Gandhi said it best,  “Be the change that you wish to see in the world." 

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