Tag Archives: gratitude

Giving: way more fun than shopping

Today at my office, we are celebrating Giving Tuesday — a movement created last year to encourage people to give amidst the orgy of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday shopping. (Don’t get me started on the rather repulsive trend of stores opening on Thanksgiving to push people to shop instead of celebrating family and other blessings.)

NorthridgeYouthI gave $25 towards the San Francisco Parks Alliance’s Giving Tuesday goal to raise $2,000 for its Action Grant program. The Parks Alliance launched Action Grants last spring, donating a total of $25,000 to promising park projects that needed some “seed money” to get off the ground. My favorite, the Northridge Community Garden, was started by Mishwa Lee, a school district retiree and sometime substitute paraprofessional. Mishwa and her fellow Northridge residents have built an amazing garden and gathering space in their Bayview housing complex — producing food, community and youth development opportunities for all residents.

I also gave $25 to what might be my favorite nonprofit in the City (though there are so many that do amazing work!). The Arc of San Francisco holds a special place in my heart because of their work ensuring that adults with developmental disabilities lead productive, independent lives. I was honored to be interviewed for their annual fundraising video this year, which I think sums up their work perfectly:

The Arc’s holiday giving drive provides $25 gift cards to their clients who might not otherwise get any gift this year.

These are just my suggestions for making a gift — of whatever size — this Giving Tuesday. Give to whatever cause is most meaningful to you today – it feels amazing!

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Natalie gets it done

Natalie, the Kindergarten crusader, has been one of my best volunteers this cycle. Seriously, this kid is a born community organizer! A month ago, she and I were walking precincts in Noe Valley together and after a few hours of trudging up and down hills and up and down stairs, I was ready to stop and go have an ice cream cone. “NO!” said Natalie firmly. “We have to finish this voter list!”

Last weekend I gave Natalie and her mom a few precincts to walk in their neighborhood. No surprise, Natalie got it done – leaving her proud mark on my voter list. My heartfelt thanks to Natalie, and all of the other volunteers who have trudged through almost 50 precincts across San Francisco in the past month to get the word out.