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The Giving Season Revisited

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At this time of year, with Thanksgiving and Christmas as major holidays, many of us find it a time for feasting, partying, celebrating and splurging on gifts and on the special foods of the season.

Others among us find it hard to bring food to the table, to feed our families and ourselves. Formerly self-sufficient, we find ourselves out of work or working only part time, barely or totally unable to pay rent or mortgage, purchase food and other necessities for our loved ones and for ourselves. Holiday? Christmas? Some might well say, "Bah. Humbug." What is jolly or merry about watching our children go hungry, or see them wistfully gazing at the holiday lights while we wish we could do better by them. It is cold, with snow and dropping temperatures, and we have no way to pay the rising heating bills.

Here in Leavenworth we have a Community Cupboard where volunteers work long hours to collect and organize donations and distribute them to local residents in need of assistance. In spite of the generosity of businesses and individuals, more donations are always needed, and gratefully received. As many of us sit--warm, comfortable and well-fed--in our homes, our own priorities often cause us to forget that others out there might be in need of food and warmth.

Other local communities also have their food banks and other groups which help to collect donations for those in need. Cashmere and Wenatchee have theirs, as do other towns in our general area. Right now, many stores are collection points for canned foods and other non-perishable goods which will go to one of the food banks. As you are shopping for your own holiday dinners and parties, please pick up a few more items for sharing. Or drop off a check at the Community Cupboard or a local food bank.

No matter your religious or non-religious views, you will find that by giving, you will be the one who receives the most.