I love the work that I do. It’s noble; it’s beautiful; it’s necessary; it’s rewarding; and it’s inspiring. I have been doing it for the last 18 years and I have not had one day of regret.
We are people of the light.
People who have devoted our lives to make this world a better place – to advocate for justice; to improve an environment that will make future generations proud of our efforts; to counsel those whose acute and chronic pain leaves them in a state of despair, wanting to end it all; to save the beautiful animals from extinction because of man’s greed and cruelty.
People of passion who devote countless hours a day to heal those with painful and life-threatening illnesses; to educate those who are trapped by ignorance; to give business opportunities to those who are voiceless and invisible; to shelter the homeless; and to supply food and clean water to the billions struggling to survive without them.
I do recognize, however, that every single year it has become more and more difficult to do what I do… what we all do. Not because of a lack of leadership, quite the contrary, we are creative in finding ways to overcome all the obstacles that come from external sources that are beyond our control. Many come from State and Federal Government… ironic, since the charitable sector is the one that takes up the slack when there are budget cuts. Some come from organizations such as the Federal Trade Commission, the United States Postal Service, initiatives from politicians that would create havoc for us if allowed to succeed, and bad actors among us that corrode trust and give a bad name to our entire sector.
It is always surprising to me that we have all these obstacles placed before us when you consider that we are responsible for more than 10% of the employment of this nation, and that’s not counting the many tangential jobs created by the strategic partners who work alongside us in helping us to fulfill our beautiful missions.
And yet often times we are silent and invisible.
The solution… to unite! Our power together is much more than the sum of its parts. I said at the beginning that we are people of the light, but when we hold our candles separately, they can easily be blown out by winds of adversity. But when we put our lights together we create a bonfire that will make ashes of every obstacle placed before us.
The Nonprofit Alliance, of which I am a founding member and Food For The Poor a founding organization, seeks to be that voice for our sector, that unifying force for all existing nonprofits, strategic partners, and membership organizations. It is only by coming together that we will be able to gain the respect that we so richly deserve for our lifesaving work.