Thanksgiving kicks off the holiday season and brings to mind families gathering around the table to enjoy a big meal, people traveling to be together, college kids coming home from school, and early morning shopping adventures. However, for millions of Americans, the traditional themes of Thanksgiving – family, food, and home – are in jeopardy or out of reach all together. Any local paper will tell the tale of the growing poverty trend; people losing their jobs, requiring the use of Food Stamps to feed their families, and being put out of their homes and not being able to find shelter. 60 minutes recently did a seqment highlighting the millions of homeless children who still manage to go to school every day, and the New York Times has done a series of articles and opinion pieces on growing poverty, including the number of formerly middle class families falling into poverty and rise of hunger among U.S. children. Not exactly the kind of news that puts you in the holiday spirit.
But, there are plenty of reasons to be thankful, and more importantly, plenty of ways you can get in the holiday spirit by getting involved. We asked some of our organizations to tell us why they were thankful this year on Twitter, and after seeing what they had to say, we are the ones who are thankful to be working with such incredible human services organizations. You can see all their tweets by going to our Twitter or searching #WhoCaresIDo or #thankful. Here are just a few of the reasons people are so thankful for human services, which make a difference for millions of people every year. We encourage you to learn more about the organizations below and consider how you can help them serve even more people in need.
- @alznyc and their Care Consultation services counseled 1,311 individuals & families in 2011
- @BKSNY provides high quality care & education for children in low income neighborhoods in Brooklyn
- @CAMBAInc Each month, 3,400 people receive food from their emergency food pantry ow.ly/7CZaQ
- @CCBplusQ employs 500 teens each year as part of their Summer Youth Employment Program.lockerz.com/s/158743392
- @HenryStreet served 47,742 meals to seniors this year at their senior center.
- @HetrickMartin keeps over 2,000 youth off the streets each year!
- @HMIYouth created You Are Loved video about #LGBT suicides and helps youth in need. bit.ly/usOePQ
- @NYNJGoodwill hosted a Thanksgiving lunch for clients, check it out – bit.ly/tCDqST
- @ProjectRenewal’s shelters helped 2,200 men and women this year prepare to live independently!
- @SafeSpaceNYC serves 10,000 children and caregivers each year.
- @unitedwaynyc took part in an amazing Fight Against hunger event ow.ly/7E5SJ
- @UnivSettlement serves 25,000 people on a DAILY basis.
- @WeAreBCS 14 volunteers cooked and shared an early Thanksgiving meal with over 100 members of the BCS MetroClub.
You can also go to our website to sign our petition to protect human services funding and find other ways to get involved. Human services help people stay in their homes, have a good meal, and keeps families together. Funding for these programs is scarcer than ever, and we need your help to protect the programs so many people are thankful for.