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Give thanks, and think of those less fortunate

Posted: November 16, 2013 - 3:36pm

Thanksgiving is just around the corner. As we celebrate our bounty, many of us also will be looking forward to the holiday season — the first day of Hanukkah coincides with Thanksgiving this year, and after Turkey Day, there’s just 26 more shopping days until Christmas. At this time of year, it’s easy — and understandable — to have our heads filled with visions of sugarplums.

But we’d like to encourage everyone to pause, and consider those less fortunate here on the Kenai Peninsula, throughout the state and across the world. There are many who have barely enough to get by day to day, let alone celebrate the holidays. And with recent disasters, there are many who may not even make it through today.

Thankfully there are a number of organizations stepping in to help, and numerous local groups doing charitable work that could benefit from a donation. Please consider giving what you can, whether it’s a monetary donation, a gift of food or clothing, or volunteer hours. Every little bit makes the world a better place for the rest of us.

If you are looking for a gift idea for a hard-to-shop-for relative you can always donate in their name, or give a gift card to an organization with the mission to support the less fortunate. And in just a couple of months, we’ll be applying for the Alaska Permanent Fund dividend. Donating through the Pick.Click.Give. program has become a popular way to share some of our good fortune.

There’s no end of places and agencies that would be grateful for support — local animal shelters, food banks, homeless shelters, schools, senior centers. You can also help closer to home — perhaps you know a neighbor that could use help shoveling snow or doing work around the house.

And one last thing: Don’t forget to tell the people in your life how much you appreciate them and just what they mean to you. You’d be surprised how often we forget to tell each other such simple things and how much they mean to the recipient.

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