Published on December 21, 2023 in Advocacy
While many of us are busy hanging decorations, shopping for gifts, and preparing meals this holiday season, I wanted to take a moment to thank our partners, volunteers, supporters, and community for everything you have done to Light the Way for those in need this year.
Together, we have made an incredible difference in the lives of so many individuals and families across Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties.
Here are just a few of the achievements I’m celebrating this holiday season:
Of course, this year hasn’t been without difficult moments. We continue to hold space for those who have lost loved ones due to senseless acts of gun violence and those impacted by the global atrocities that have dominated recent news cycles. We also understand that closer to home, more and more families are struggling under the weight of rising prices and the end of COVID-era supports.
In the midst of dark days, it can feel difficult to find joy. However, it is in these moments that the human spirit often shines brightest. We are reminded to hold our loved ones a little bit closer and called to look toward the small moments of solace. For me, that’s the sound of my son’s laughter or the first bite of macaroni and cheese during holiday dinner.
During this time, I also reflect on a quote from the beloved poet and activist Maya Angelou, “Nothing can dim the light that shines from within you.”
The holiday season – no matter your faith or how you celebrate – offers us all an opportunity to be a beacon of hope for our community. When we each commit to shining our light, we illuminate a path to a brighter future.
I hope you’ll find ways to be the light for others this holiday season. Whether it’s offering a kind word and a smile, making a donation, or volunteering, never underestimate the power of a single action. Your warmth can spark a chain reaction that makes a difference in the life of one person and permeates, impacting many. Together we can light the way.
Wishing you and your family joy, peace, and love during the holiday season and beyond.
Darienne Driver Hudson, Ed.D.
President and CEO
United Way for Southeastern Michigan