Giving Back And Giving Forward This Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is truly one of my favorite holidays. It causes most of us to reflect upon the many things there are to give thanks for, despite the “stuff” that can be discouraging if we let it. 

Not only can Thanksgiving warm our hearts with what we’re thankful for, it can start a chain reaction in others and prompt the question, “What can I do for someone else? How can I make a positive difference in some way … big or small?” 

To that end, we want to share a wonderful and true story. It illustrates that, despite tremendous loss, there is still much to be grateful for. And one person’s thankful heart can stir a community to help others. Imagine That™! 

Meet Sylvia And Herbert Tross

The Tross’ lost everything in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina back in 2005. For as long as they could remember, they had opened their home to share with others the warmth of a home-cooked Thanksgiving meal. With their home now completely destroyed, however, they faced the harsh reality that they’d be spending Thanksgiving at a shelter with hundreds of other needy families. 

But, instead of letting the holiday be a reminder of what they’d lost, they decided to contribute their time and efforts cooking and setting up a makeshift dining area for everyone in the shelter to celebrate together.

Word got out.

Local businesses and volunteers poured in to provide meals, clothing, and daily-use items for the shelter. The Tross’ little idea of “maybe we can do something, even if it’s small” snowballed.  The community pulled together, took care of each other, and showed us all just how much good there is in the hearts of people. Oftentimes, it just takes a spark to start the fire. 

How Will You Give Back (or Forward) This Year?

There are so many ways to make a difference in the lives of the less fortunate. Here are several quick ideas, and please send us your favorite things to do so we can share them in next year’s letter!  

1. Volunteer at a neighborhood soup kitchen
2. Donate blood
3. Go grocery shopping for a neighbor
4. Take family and friends to go sing at a neighborhood senior center or retirement home
5. Participate in a Turkey Day Run!
6. Wash and vacuum a disabled or senior’s vehicle
7. Send an inmate a letter (many churches have lists of people you can write)
8. Be an Angel Tree sponsor to a child whose parent is in prison 
9. Drop off a new toy at the Marine’s “Toys For Tots” collection site 
10. Donate books to your local library
11. Organize a park/beach/river clean-up in your neighborhood or community
12. Drop off a care package at a local fire or police department
13. Embrace random opportunities to do good!  

We’ve met families who make volunteering this time of year a family activity, including their children in teaching to give back to those less fortunate than we are. There are even fun things like “Turkey Day Runs” if that’s more your style.

It’s also helpful to remember that working retail and service gets especially difficult this time of year with folks stressed for the holidays. So, if you are doing any Black Friday shopping, remember that many employees may be working a 10-16 hour shift that day, and take a moment to be kind.

Whether you’re donating to charity, volunteering, or kicking back to watch the football game after a big meal of turkey and stuffing, Happy Thanksgiving from all of us here at Wealth Legacy Group! 

“Imagine That™”!

Imagine That! is a complimentary monthly newsletter provided by Wealth Legacy Group®, Inc. that addresses various topics of interest for high-net-worth and high-income business owners, professionals, executives and their families. Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter here.

R. J. Kelly, Wealth Legacy Group®, Inc. – November 2023

Header image on Canva, one design use license