A Season for Sharing

December 2, 2022

Categories: community, In the Community

Laurie Baker

By Laurie Baker

At The Summit Federal Credit Union, we consistently focus on the fundamentals of financial wellness with young people. When we are out in the community talking with students and through our blogs, we regularly mention the three “S’s”: Save, Spend, and Share.  While we’ve spent a lot of time this year on Saving and Spending, it is “Sharing” that comes to mind especially at this time of year.

Community giving is part of The Summit’s collective DNA and it’s at the core of the credit union philosophy of “People Helping People”.  In addition to monetary donations, Summit employees are also out in our communities raising awareness for great causes and helping to fundraise for them. I’m proud of the time that our employees devoted to community giving this year alone.

It’s at this time of year that we see the most need in our communities. We are continually invited, as individuals, to support good causes through emails, on social media, and in our mailboxes.  Although we would like to give to every cause, it’s impossible – increasingly so in an uncertain economy. A simple act of kindness creates a ripple effect. Our willingness to share affects others, and it’s about giving our time as well as our dollars. I encourage you to give if you can. I wanted to share a few reasons why – some of which may surprise you.

  • People who feel like they have a purpose and are making a difference tend to have better emotional and physical wellbeing. Generosity is proven to reduce stress and symptoms of depression.
  • Volunteering your time reduces the sense of loneliness.
  • Giving helps you learn more about the world, broadening perspectives and fueling understanding.

For me personally, I have been a supporter of Mary Cariola and the Villa of Hope for many years. Both organizations serve children and young adults through academic, residential, and community outreach programs – youth being a personal passion for me.  Most recently, I joined the Board of the Geneseo Foundation, an organization focused on ensuring students are poised to achieve their true potential.

As federal and state funding is cut, many of those organizations doing great work in our communities simply cannot survive without our support. If you have limited funds to share with a worthwhile organization, it’s worth doing your homework to find those that align with your values and the things that interest you. If monetary donations aren’t possible for you, consider giving of your time and talent. There are charities that are in desperate need of volunteers.

It’s important to ensure that the philanthropic torch is passed on.  For children, it’s important to instill a sense of sharing at an early age so that by the time that they reach adulthood, giving becomes second nature. It can be a fun family project! I like to envision a world where the next generation seamlessly takes over as philanthropists.

Make sharing a part of your holiday tradition this year. You’ll feel great and that feeling will reach so many others!