Monday, December 15, 2014

Why I Give, Part 1

The holiday season puts me in a conundrum, every year. Not only do I scramble to find (and budget for!) thoughtful gifts for my family members of friends, but I also worry about whether or not the tips I leave for my dog walker and building super are enough to show my appreciation. On top of that, this time of year is when all of the charitable organizations I follow send me emails asking for me to give. And I want to give to them all!

My niece and nephew on their first day of school!
But for a gal with student loans that need paying, I need to make choices and come up with my plan for giving. So, how did I narrow down my choices this year? Why did I give to the groups that I did? I gave because I was personally invested in specific missions or causes. I donated to my niece and nephew's school to help support the building of their new playground. I donated to an organization that helps kids in a remote town in the Philippines, a place that I visited, buy boats so that they can get to a nearby island for school. I donated to a local food bank that will feed hungry NYC children this holiday season. And, honestly, I donated to The New Victory Theater. 

Every day, working here, I see lives change. At our Education performances, school buses pull up and let out hundreds of different kids-- we see all personalities, from shy, boisterous, funny, excited, apprehensive to outspoken. By the end of the show, every kid has a question they want to ask (you should see the hands shoot up at our talkbacks), every kid has something to say to a classmate and every kid leaves ready to express him or herself (you should have seen hundreds of kids attempting to break dance in our lobby after seeing 360 Allstars). Coming from a big family where it was sometimes hard to be heard through the noise of six other siblings vying for attention, I know the impact the arts can have. Music helped me find a voice as a shy, young kid. And I know the same interests are sparked for kids at our theater every day. 

So, why do you give? We asked our donors for their answers and we'll be sharing their replies all week long. Hear what they had to say, along with some recent responses we received from school kids after a performance of Cirque Ziva-- you'll see the impact that $35, through our Give A Kid A Seat campaign, can have. We hope you'll consider adding us to your list this holiday season!

Click to read Part 2 and Part 3


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