What Generosity Can Look Like During Covid-19
It is natural in a time of sudden change and unknowns to focus on our own situation. Our natural instincts are for self preservation. That is a good thing, and it will help us adapt, persevere, find solutions, and overcome our challenges. Humans are resilient. Humankind faces horrific challenges every year. It’s just this time North America is faced with the challenge as well. Usually, the closest we get to emergencies of this kind is through hearing the news. Most Westerners have lived a relatively comfortable and sheltered life.
Now that we have had several weeks to come to grips with the situation, shore up the areas we can, get used to what working life looks like through self isolating, where exactly are we? Our leaves have been raked, our homes are cleaner than they have been in years, many long-standing items on our to-do lists have finally been addressed and we are heavier than we want to be thanks to more home cooking. Many of us have had strong reminders of what we truly value, what is not as important and how our time, money and energy were out of line. It’s likely that too much was going to the latter and not the former.
Another group has lost personal conveniences but has maintained incomes more or less. Life has been more difficult with kids or other dependents at home, especially if there are inefficiencies in working from home. Finally, there is a group of individuals who have been extremely fortunate to not have had health concerns and their families are not significantly impacted. And if they are invested in our conservative non-traditional portfolios, they are continuing to see growth in their investments through this turmoil. And to top it all off, thanks to technology, their businesses have become more efficient than ever.
Despite the wide range in impact, as individuals and as a nation we entered this pandemic as one of the most affluent, advanced peoples/nations of all time. We were the global elite. Time will tell to what degree individual decks will be reshuffled. However, we will exit this crisis remaining some of the most fortunate people and nation on the planet. Our healthcare, political stability, natural resources, infrastructure, and human resources provide a massive platform from which to relaunch. Although our generation in the west has not faced this level of challenge before, mankind has and so have our forefathers. We too, will emerge as overcomers.
So how do we take a leadership position, begin implementing solutions and make a difference? Canadians are generous, caring people. I am sure you have already heard of the many unsung heroes who are setting the pace in this pandemic. We have countless charities that are on the ground already practically serving people in need.
The impact COVID-19 has had on our nation has a very wide range. There has been tragedy for those who have lost loved ones, businesses, jobs, or had delays in treatment for serious health issues. The list goes on and on with these unique personal implications.
Here are several ideas for you to leave your mark:
- Do not stop: If you are already giving monthly to great causes, keep doing it. If you are not, now is the time to step up.
- Move December to May: Many people make their charitable contributions in December or top up their contributions. Do it now instead. The money will be much more appreciated in these current times.
- Consider An Unusual Gift in Response to Unusual Circumstances: Our clients know how much is enough for their future and where they are relative to that finish line. Many are well ahead of target, perhaps the extra is for such a time as this. If you do not know how much you need to fund your future, give us a call.
- Donate Your Gas: Well not literally. But try to give what you would have spent on gas, entertainment, restaurants, hobbies and interests, retail shopping and more. For those of us who feel we don’t have an abundance, we are saving a fair bit during isolation, this is found money that can make a difference.
- Clean Up and Clear Out: As you spring clean with your extra time, pack up the clothes that don’t fit or haven’t left the drawer in the last year. Books, doubles of kitchen items, garage tools are some other ideas as well. If it is not being used, package it for your local thrift store that supports a charity.
- Contribute Time: Do you have a skillset that is needed by a charity? Chances are you will not be traveling far for a while. Perhaps part of this year’s vacation can be contributed to a charity for a specific project.
It is time to move from defense to offense. Let’s all play a part in our recovery.