In January, Chattarati invites leaders and thinkers to participate in What Matters Now, a commentary series of ideas for our region in 2010.
Written by Bill Colrus.
Images of the dead, dying, and displaced people of Haiti are among the most harrowing the world has ever seen. In response, millions of people across the globe have found ways to help — whether by pushing the leaders of their respective nations to act swiftly or by working in spite of them — and have, in turn, inspired millions of others to do the same. It might be hard to fathom right now, but one silver lining in this unfathomable tragedy is that once all of the worldwide aid has been delivered and all of the rebuilding has been completed, Haiti could quite possibly be left with the most advanced infrastructure it has ever known.
While our country is blessed to not be suffering a disaster on the scale of the one weve just seen, our distressed economy continues to wreak havoc on the lives of millions of Americans. Bringing our country back from this brink will also take a team effort. For all of the people whose lives will be positively impacted by, say, the opening of a new Volkswagen plant, thousands more will continue to struggle. Maybe even you.
As our leaders bicker and fumble in their panicked attempt to fix our nation, our nations success will ultimately rest, as it always has, in the potential of our people. With that in mind, what matters now — for Chattanooga and for the country as a whole — is giving.
Give not looking for recognition, only for the opportunity to give again.
Give to help lift others up so they are then also able to give.
Give up your pride long enough to allow someone else to give to you.
A spirit of giving forces us to challenge each other. Challenging each other means taking risks. And taking risks is the only way to achieve great things.
Whether you give your money, your time, or your talents, just give. I dare you.
Here is a list of ways to give to the relief efforts in Haiti.
To give to the people of our region, just look around. Opportunities are everywhere.
Bill Colrus is a former editor of the Chattanooga Pulse.