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To act or not to act...

I enjoy writing this blog as it’s a good outlet for sharing the hopes and dreams of our community but that’s not the only reason for the publishing. My true hope and desire for writing the blog is to entice engagement… the action of participation, sharing, involvement. Engagement by our community for our community is vital for its success and can be achieved in many ways and can be categorized into three pillars: Time, Talent, and Treasure.

· Time is arguably the most valuable resource we all have. Once a second ticks away it’s gone forever. That’s why it’s generally agreed how precious the gift of time truly is. This type of giving is providing your own time to help others. Examples would include volunteering to help with a community clean-up day, volunteering to organize a community festival, or sitting on the board of a local organization. Taking a quick moment to share or comment on this blog is another simple example.

· Talent, whether you share your unique skills or professional expertise, can be used to give back to your community. Examples may include an attorney providing pro bono office hours at a local small business incubator, or a professional accountant who manages the finances of a non-profit, or a handyman who helps fix-up a blighted downtown building. It’s not only rewarding to donate your talents, but also highly valued because it provides a service or expertise that is often out of reach for the recipients.

· Treasure, when we think of giving our treasure the thought is usually of donating money. While this is the most common type of donation, it could also come in the form of real estate, collectibles, and more. Your treasure can be donated to a private foundation, like our Union City Community Foundation or other local community based non-profit organizations, which could be a tax advantage for you and allows your charitable contribution to benefit in many possible ways such as grants, scholarships and more. “Giving” to your community could also be purchasing from a school fundraiser or at a locally owned business instead of at a chain or out of town business.

Kathy and I work hard to give back to our community and want to see it grow. In fact, that is the main reason we anchored The Buzz of UC Café right here in Union City. It is a HUGE investment of our time, talent, and treasure. We could have chosen to open elsewhere, in a community with a higher population and active growth, but we think we can make a difference right here and hope that we are. Watch the video on the bottom of our homepage and you will hear that message and if you haven’t been to visit us at the café, we invite you!

Which one is right for you? Think about what time, talent and/or treasure you are able to expand giving to see our community flourish! Identify something you will do in the next 30 days and act! Perhaps you are already giving in a significant way, and we truly appreciate that!! What will it be, to act or not to act? Please share your thoughts in the comments, we’d love to hear.

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