Many Americans think of Thanksgiving as a wonderful opportunity to gather with family and friends to give thanks for the blessings we enjoy. Each year on the fourth Thursday of November, we join together for a feast and some football, in celebration of history and traditions. This year, as you all prepare your Thanksgiving festivities, please keep in mind the importance of this gathering and why we celebrate it.
A TIME TO GATHER
Thanksgiving means different things to different people, but for most of us the holiday is synonymous with festive meals, parades, family and friends and of course turkey dinner. In today’s busy world it can be difficult for families and friends to find quality time together. Part of what makes Thanksgiving so special is the chance to enjoy the company of loved ones, some of whom may travel great distances to come home.
HELPING OTHERS THIS HOLIDAY
While we reflect on the wonderful things we have in our lives, it’s important to provide needed assistance to those who might not be as fortunate. This year I encourage everyone to help out the local organizations that are in need of volunteers and donations. Our neighbors and communities are better off because of the selfless and noble work done by volunteers in these distinguished institutions.
Here’s a list of organizations in our community in need of donations:
- Foodlink (http://foodlinkny.org/fight_hunger/ways-to-give/) and the Food Bank of Central New York (http://www.foodbankcny.org/support-us/) host food drives and take donations from individuals and businesses to help provide food to shelters and other hunger-relief agencies in the area.
- Gleaners Community Kitchen in Canandaigua has been helping neighbors for more than 25 years through generous donations of time, food and money. Information about opportunities to assist is available at www.gleanerskitchen.org.
- The Salvation Army’s goal is to feed, to clothe, to comfort and to care. This holiday season your generosity will help improve someone’s holiday http://empire.salvationarmy.org/.
- The Victor Farmington Food Cupboard is run by 100 percent volunteer effort and is always looking for a helping hand. Find out more about this year’s clothing drive at https://www.facebook.com/VictorFarmingtonFoodCupboard.
- Finger Lakes Community College has an extensive list of volunteer opportunities in the Finger Lakes area. Visit the website at http://www.flcc.edu/volunteer/volunteer_all.cfm
Donating or volunteering your time can go a long way toward helping to make someone else’s holiday a little brighter. This year, let’s make sure everyone has something to be thankful for. God Bless all of you and have a happy and safe Thanksgiving.
What do you think? I want to hear from you. Send me your feedback, suggestions and ideas regarding this or any other issue facing New York State. You can always contact my district office at (315) 781-2030, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, find me by searching for Assemblyman Brian Kolb on Facebook and follow me on Twitter.