Women in Philanthropy – Help Where You Can
This blog post was written by Susan Watson in a series of guest blogs surrounding Women in Philanthropy on May 22nd. Susan works for Northwestern Mutual and has been a UWGG donor for 12 years. Susan is a member of United Way of Greater Greensboro’s Women’s Leadership Council, serving as chair in 2010.
In the days following the 2nd Annual Women in Philanthropy Luncheon, I heard a number of discussions around the idea put forth by Karen Walrond of a life list, or as she likes to call it, a life menu. Karen explained that a menu differs from a bucket list, giving us options to pick and choose from things that make us smile or give us joy. This appealed to me because I am a list maker, lots of lists, all kinds of lists. That doesn’t necessarily mean I get a lot of things checked off, I just like to plan, organize and make lists. I strongly suspect that I’m not alone.
One conversation I heard was about Susan’s (another Susan) great Easter trip to the Mykonos Islands. After hearing her describe it, I added it to my list which is already filled with travel. But, as we are making our life menus, I hope one phrase comes to mind that Karen, very carefully wove in an out of her story: “help where you can”. She heard it from her father all through her childhood, help where you can. Our greatest smiles come when we’ve taken the time to make others smile.
In the spirit of helping others, my list (I still like to call it a list) also has an entry for a foreign mission trip. Does that mean I can check off helping others with that one big trip? I think not. I believe that Karen’s father meant help where you can, every time you can, with the talents and resources that you’ve been given.
United Way supports 70 programs and initiatives through 29 member agencies. Each program and initiative must demonstrate that it meets a need in the community, makes an impact, and aligns with United Way’s objectives. Let me say it once more, fully vetted programs that meet a need right here in our community. There is something for you. This is your call to action: join us, Women in Philanthropy, African American Leadership, Young Leaders… help where you can.
I think William Arthur Ward said it best: “Blessed is the person who sees the need, recognizes the responsibility, and actively becomes the answer.”