It is indeed the season to be joyful, merry, happy, hopeful and giving, and I wish for you and yours the best that this season has to offer. As you go about your business eating, mingling, networking, partying, shopping and celebrating with family and friends, do remember that there are very many people out there who are depressed, heartbroken, lonely, sick and grieving. There are numerous persons out there who are struggling and many more who are literally homeless, and even though we cannot save everyone, I am hoping that each of us can at least try to make the holidays brighter for at least one person.

As you embark on shopping for many things you do not need, consider spreading cheer and goodwill to those who are actually in need. How about purchasing a scarf or jacket for the homeless man you pass each and every day? If that is a stretch, maybe purchase two cups of coffee and give one to someone who needs that warmth and hot beverage? The reality is that some of the needs that people have are intangible and you will only know about them if you spend the time to have a conversation. In the absence of that, consider paying closer attention to your neighbors, co-workers, friends, and even family members who are not in a cheerful mood and reach out to them. Who knows? Maybe a listening ear and a hug are all they need to feel warm during this season.

As I look back on the past year, I am very thankful for the personal time I took which helped me to be in a healthier and happier place today. I am thankful for all the very many blessings I received from others I know and from the Creator. I am thankful that I am doing my best to live my best life despite many obstacles, and I am cheerful because each day that I wake up, I see it as another day for me to be a better version of myself.

My Christmas wish for you is that you will set aside some personal time to just think back on your Resolutions, Dreams and Accomplishments for 2018. Celebrate the fact that you have made it this far (even if those RDAs did not come to fruition). After you do that, start actively thinking about (and write down) your desires, goals, aspirations, resolutions, and dreams for the upcoming year. You may find that some are the same for 2018 as they will be for 2019, but guess what? That is OK…some of us need more than 365 days to make “it” happen. I wish that you seriously spend more time focusing on your blessings instead of those things you have no control over. Finally, I hope you will start speaking your desires to the Universe, because the Universe is listening.

For all of you who made giving back to The Give Black Foundation a priority in 2018, we say a BIG Thank You!

Seasons Greetings,

Rosie Peppy Parke
Executive Director
The Give Black Foundation, Inc .