Every day at the YWCA we experience the amazing generosity of our community. There’s amazing serendipity when we have a need and as we think about how to address it within our programs, as if by magic, the solutions appear. Sometimes, it is people who show up with donated food or mail in a check or show up to help at an event. This time of year, people are more vocal about being thankful. We thought this blog would be a great platform to voice our thanks in a new way.

YWCA Sojourner's Shelter children's chalk art

Studies show that a grateful heart and a purposeful awareness of what we are grateful for has important and lasting health benefits. By writing in a gratitude journal just once a week for just six weeks, participants in one study experienced a boost in happiness. Other scientific studies link habits of gratitude to myriad emotional, social, career and health benefits.

By practicing an attitude of gratitude, we are able to pause and savor the small and the big events in life. Daily gratitude practice gives us a chance to appreciate our own world and the people in it.

As we approach a holiday where hearts and hands join to reflect on what we have to be thankful for, we offer this from our grateful hearts. Each and every day, we are grateful for so many things at YWCA Charleston.

We are certainly thankful for all of the employees who come to work at the YWCA every day to help others. They give to others and lift them up. We have people working 24-hours-a-day, 365-days a year to support those we serve.

We are thankful for all of the volunteers who jump in with smiles on their faces and willing hands to share their time with us. Volunteers make our world go around—some people call and ask if they can help, others just show up with items they know our clients can use. You wonderful people join committees and our board to help build the programs and secure funding through incredible events.

We are thankful for the generous donors who dig deep and often to support our programs financially. They donate to honor loved ones and to lift up those around them. They pay it forward and pay it backward because they know someone who found help in our programs.

We are thankful for the corporate sponsors who share their resources of people, time and money to make our community a better place. They think of us when they have too much food at an event or when they see a news story and know they can make a difference. They recognize that we are partners in elevating our community and that together we can create a brighter future.

We are thankful for the program participants we have the honor of meeting. We are blessed by their attitudes of gratitude and their willingness to share their stories. Stopping to talk to the people in our programs is a pleasure and a privilege.

If you are reading this, know that we appreciate you. Every day we are thankful at YWCA Charleston.

If you feel thankful for what you have and feel you have more to share with others, please get in touch with us. We welcome you at YWCA Charleston!

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