Edward Everette Hale penned these words that I’ve seen on posters and quoted many times. That must indicate that he said something significant! You decide:
“I am only one, but still I am one.
I cannot do everything,
but still I can do something;
and because I cannot do everything,
I will not refuse to do something
that I can do.”
So what can YOU do? Here’s my list of suggestions:
Take up collections of…
- Ask for or donate stock or cash
- “Pass the basket” at work, in your neighborhood, at your civic club, etc.
- Host a fundraiser (carnival, bake sale, talent show, etc.)
- Contact people who are passionate for your issue and who will make a gift
Items needed by individuals or social service agencies
- Books / School supplies / Clothing / Food items / Toiletry items / Household goods / Gift cards Work gear
- Advocate for your issue or concern
- Disseminate information to appropriate decision makers
- Write letters to the editor
Give your time
Find an organization that works in the area where your passion lies and get involved
- Volunteer for regular times each week/month
- Commit to a specific time-bound project
- Serve on a committee, task force, Board of Directors
Ignite others to your issue/concern
- Your workplace / Your neighborhood / Your civic groups / Your social groups / Your congregation, etc.
Meet and talk with people who are suffering
Volunteer with an organization that works with people for whom you have a passion
Look around you as you enter your neighborhood, workplace, place of worship. Can you begin a conversation with someone you see?
Read stories, books, and articles about people who are suffering. Allow them into your being
Learn more about your issue of passion
Talk with people who are already working in the area of your interest
Listen carefully and deeply before making suggestions for solutions
Look for the “underbelly” of whatever ideas you develop. Most good solutions also have negative impact. Can you reduce the downside, the unintended consequences?
Read and research your issue so that you know what advocates for and advocates against think and believe
Create forums where ideas can be shared and discussed
Become aware of how your life impacts others
Buy fairly traded products (Coffee, items at retail stores such as Ten Thousand Villages where artisans are paid fair wages for their products, etc.)
Consider the concept that cheap food, clothing, and other items means that workers may not be paid adequate wages
Offer someone a job and work with him/her in learning how to keep it
Use resources (material and environmental) in ways that benefit the greater good. For example, ask yourself when you buy, “Do I need it and/or could that money help someone else?”
Can you reduce your energy consumption?
Provide prayer, spiritual, emotional, and social support
For people on the “front lines” of addressing the area of your passion.
For groups within your congregation or organization(s) who are involved in serving others.
For community leaders and politicians who work to make the changes in which you believe. .
*Options for reading: Visit website: www.oureyeswereopened.org
Be the answer to the solutions you seek