You do not have to own a company or nonprofit to make a difference, all it takes is asking the question of what can I do for this cause, movement, organization…my community? How can we as individuals fill a void, whether big or small, that will make a difference and possibly a ripple effect? The outside perspective on corporate community service is that a CEO gets their hands dirty occasionally, to show the local or global community that they care. This is not untrue. However, serving the community goes deeper than taking an opportunistic photo with a thumbs up and a plastered smile that says tax write-off. It’s imperative to remain a part of the community, no matter the heights you reach. And more importantly not allowing the prospect of recognition to be the driving force to solve a problem. Make it a point to volunteer, give, work but do something.
Monte Scott, a 12 year old from Muskegon Heights, MI, was fed up with the pot hole ridden street that he lived on and took it upon himself to fill 15+ potholes. He knew the issue was affecting everyone and decided that waiting for someone to “save the street” he needed to use what he had to make a difference. The Grand Haven Tribune reported that he picked up his shovel, got some dirt from his back yard, and evened out the road. He did not have any concrete or money to correct the road. However with enough gumption and worry after his watching his mother mess up her car on the road he knew the problem was bigger than just him.
How many of us take the time to take what we have, regardless of the amount, and fix something in the community? The city or state may not always allocate funds to your cause. The fundraiser may not always raise enough funds. The interest or care to fix something may not garner a news story. It may not be a great public image for yourself or your company. But does it make it any less significant to fill the hole in your community with your gifts, a favor, an act of kindness, or your influence to make your community better? We have the unlimited ability to take care of ourselves and each other with simple actions that create an even road to prosperity for our respective corners of the world.