Times are a changing! We have all been working so hard to adapt and adjust. Our “normal” everyday activities and routines look so different these days. We all tackle these changes in very different ways. Maybe it is calling a friend to see how they are surviving children at home, all day every day or buying groceries for a neighbor. Our family has been ordering take out at least once each week to support our local businesses and shopping locally as much as possible. Taking care of ourselves, family, friends and neighbors is at the top of our lists.
I find that thinking about ways to serve and help others is a great way to take my mind off some of my concerns and it reminds me that I can control how I choose to feel and continue to interact with this world. But, where do you start? Who needs the help the most? What type of help is needed? Who can I trust to use my financial donation in the way that I would want it to be used? What can I do?
I have had the honor to participate on the Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation (“BLACF”) board for the last couple of years. It is an opportunity to learn more about the needs of our greater lakes community, how those needs are being addressed and what I can do to help. The BLACF 2020 grant round was underway when COVID-19 hit. That grant round was suspended and the BLACF instead focused its efforts on setting up the Brainerd Lakes Area Response Fund. This Fund is used to make grants for organizations to primarily address needs around daycare for essential workers, mental health support, food insecurity, and emergency financial assistance for individuals and families. They put out a press release May 4, 2020 that shares how donations are being used to provide grants for many local organizations. Learn more at www.communitygiving.org/BLACF.
For those seniors in our community, the Crosslake Cares organization is a great resource connecting seniors to services in our community. This time can be so challenging for seniors who are largely staying at home with limited outside activities and social interactions. Crosslake Cares has a help line at 218-513-0131 or check out their website at www.crosslakecares.org. This may be a resource not only for yourself but maybe another way to learn where some additional needs may be.
Reach out and see how you can connect and provide service to others. The above organizations are clearly not the only places to connect, just a couple a of ideas to get you thinking.
Please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with any topic suggestions or requests you may have. Although we cannot give you legal advice through the column, we can provide some general information that may be helpful for you to know. Our purpose is to educate and we hope that you can take something new away from this column each time you read it.