Friday, January 16, 2009

Make LIVE UNITED a resolution you keep in 2009

It’s hard for me to make New Year’s Resolutions. I didn’t see the point because I could never find the motivation to keep them. Once March rolls around, I have a hard time even remembering what they were.

So last year I did something different. I asked myself what small steps I could take to create change in myself and the world around me. I wanted to focus on clear efforts that would have long-term benefits. Each step had a specific goal and several ways I could practice new habits every day.

In the spring of 2008 United Way of America rolled out a new focus for the United Way Brand and Impact System: LIVE UNITED and Advancing the Common Good. And oddly enough, when I learned more about these ideals, they paralleled my thought process of small actions to create change.

LIVE UNITED is call to action for individuals across the community to unite and create a better tomorrow. When we reach out a hand to one, we influence the condition of all—creating positive ripples out to the community as a whole. When we think of our lives as connected to the lives of others around us, we have the power to create opportunities for everyone to have a better life.

So this year, I challenge you to LIVE UNITED. Here are eight easy ways to get you started:

1. Attend Vision Councils or any of the other action committees throughout the Marshfield area.

2. Give generously to organizations close to home and close to your heart.

3. Open doors for others, say please and thank you, and smile.

4. Learn about community needs, then advocate for those that you think take priority.

5. Tell people you know to dial 2-1-1 when they are having a hard time or don’t know where to turn for community services and programs.

6. Lend a Hand through local nonprofits, service clubs, school organizations or church functions.

7. Double check your nonperishable food items to make sure they’re not expired before you give to food drives throughout the year.

8. Write a letter to your congressional or local representative. If you don’t let them know what’s important to you, no one will.

Make LIVE UNITED a resolution you’ll keep (and remember past March). Learn more about United Way and how you can Give. Advocate. Volunteer. click here to visit our Web site or call 394-9992.

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