Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Happy National Philanthropy Day®!
Many of you ask me why we celebrate this day on 15th November rather than any other; my answer is that “we don’t know”. First celebrated in 1986, proclaimed by then president, Ronald Reagan, National Philanthropy Day is celebrated by many thousands around the world.
So in answer to the question, humour me for a moment. For National Philanthropy Day falls between two significant commemorations, Veterans Day (which I know as Remembrance Day) and Thanksgiving.
Last Sunday we remembered those who had died serving their countries. We remembered those whose lives and communities had been destroyed by war. And we also celebrate those who have survived to rebuild their lives, communities and countries after the horrors inflicted on them.
Next week, those of us in the United States meet to give thanks for the survival of those who built a new country so many years ago. We celebrate with family and friends and give thanks for all that is good in our lives.
For me, it is no coincidence that National Philanthropy Day falls at this time of year.
All of us are joined in our desire to serve. All of us give above and beyond what we are called on to do in order that we might live in a just, fair and vibrant world and that others might share it with us.
We understand that.
At this time, in particular, we need to remind others what the concept of public service means. We need to help our elected representatives understand that they are there to represent entire communities, not simply those who elected them. We need to help them understand their duty to heal the rifts and divides created over the last few months and years and unite in service to the country they represent.
This year, Canada became the first country to permanently recognize Nov. 15 as National Philanthropy Day®. I hope this can be taken as a sign that, with our support, hearing our message, all of us can be united behind one cause, changing the world with a giving heart.
Let’s continue the process today, National Philanthropy®, by showing our elected officials, the public and everyone the collective impact of what we can do on a single day. Share with us what you’re doing on National Philanthropy Day® to change the world. In Canada, we’re proud to be working with TELUS. You can tweet to #npdTELUS. Also, check out our Canada website: npdcanada.org. Otherwise, you can tweet to #afpnpd and see our site on facebook: facebook.com/NationalPhilanthropyDay.
It is a privilege for me to serve you, and to join you all in serving populations around the world.