When a charitable organization begins, there is a dream. The dream is to provide something needed to someone who needs. Goodwill industries started to offer jobs to people who were otherwise deemed unemployable, a furniture pantry was started in Kansas City, Missouri to help individuals coming out of untenable situations start in new homes with basic things. Food pantries provide food, disease based organizations fund research and offer support. A friend started the Metro East Mutual Aid in Granite City, Illinois as a way to work with many different people in her community.
In my case, Giving Hope has launched out of existing instances I’ve had to provide assistance and help to people in need. Their circumstances have been different, but the general position they find themselves in is one with few options and lots of potential for harm and hurt. The good news is that every time an organization begins, the stories begin to unfold. As the looming devastation gets unraveled or at least paused, the new thing that is happening gets shared with another person, another family and more crises are averted.
Giving Hope has only been around for a few weeks, and already we have had opportunity to change some stories, or at least open the door for different endings.
- Alicia* received a car battery so she could continue to work
- Louis* had his electric bill paid (directly to the vendor)
- Mark* has had his rent paid for the last two months avoiding eviction
- A family was able to get birth certificates from out of state in order to apply for appropriate aid
- Multiple individuals and families had help with extra groceries and gas money
These are starting stories, the beginning of what can be, of who can avoid unemployment, losing a home, or any myriad of other difficulties when the lights go out or the tire goes flat. Giving Hope doesn’t just provide emergency aid, but offers a listening ear, a collaborative conversation, and a way to change the narrative from a scary story to one of hope. Our work is just beginning and it is our dream to work with our communities, our participants, and our donors to encourage and strengthen one another, so all our stories can be amazing.
You can be a part of the story. A donation as small as $10 can provide a gas card to a struggling family, or a grocery card to a working mom. We do not ask for lengthy forms or detailed financial histories of our participants; instead we encourage those we’ve helped to join us in helping others when they are able. Our role is not one of savior to the helpless, but companion and friend to the struggling. If you need something, say something. If you can do something, give something. Together, we can change everything.
*Names are changed