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Friday, September 20th, 2013

The Long Haul

In times of disaster the light often shines when we get to see the best come out in people – neighbors helping neighbors, the disparate corners of a community weaving together to help those most affected. It’s easy to see this light shining right here in Boulder County after last week’s devastating floods – just watch 9News or open up the Daily Camera to see photos or hear anecdotes that inspire.

The days and weeks that follow disasters often find us feeling the tug at our own heartstrings – “What can I do?” We certainly want, and even need, to see our community get back on its feet quickly, to see life return to normal. The opportunities to give are plentiful, and immediate – appeasing the urgency we feel when we look out our windows.

Some things can be fixed immediately with elbow grease, donations, and shared know how. Other impacts will stay with our community for days, weeks, and months to come. Our neighbors will need food, shelter, a new job, a place to go to school, and more for the long haul.

The frailties we suddenly become so attuned to in these moments are always there. Nonprofits across Boulder County exist to provide a strong safety net of support for ongoing needs. Emergency funds help rebuild, and reset the status quo…while existing nonprofits help to change it. These organizations, whatever their area of focus, offer members of our shared community a place to gather what they lack (whether resources, connection, education, or more).

These scrappy social sector agencies who do the work because it matters – they feel a significant impact on daily operations, or worse run the risk of going out of business, when people wholly  divert their giving to disaster relief and recovery.

SVP wants to encourage Partners and the community at large to support the rebuilding of Boulder County, and are ourselves continuing to identify the best moments for SVP to engage in those efforts. At the same time, we encourage folks to sustain their ongoing support of local nonprofits in these times of extreme need.

Let’s work to get our community back, yes – but let’s go for a “new normal” that’s even better than where we started from by not forgetting the friends who’ve been working to get us there all along.

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