by Kati Link
“We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.” -Winston Churchill
Time is precious. Where do we give it, how do we spend it? When making a decision of any kind for our skaters and organization, my co-director Ashleigh Renard and I often preface the conversation with: “remember our skaters are people first.” They are people who happen to spend a large majority of their free time with us. They are people who trust us, look up to us and respect us. They are people with amazing minds and loving hearts. They are people we have an opportunity to make a huge impression on.
With boundless blessings, each of us at Philadelphia Symmetry have clothing to warm our back, food to warm our stomach, a home to warm our soul, education to nurture our development, activities to bring the warmth of exercise and friendship, and the unconditional warmth of family support. It’s easy for all of us to let days slip by without taking a moment to pause and remember that not everyone is so blessed.
Making time to engage with each other and community, near and far, is a priority for our organization. This tradition of community outreach began a few years ago with a pink ribbon initiative to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month. October has since grown into our month of “organized giving.” Each week we ask our skaters and their families to suggest service ideas near and dear to their hearts. These ideas are then transformed into our weekly projects.
This season, we are pleased to share our participation in Breast Cancer Awareness Month (pink ribbons in hair for all practices), collected markers and stickers for Sara Smiles (Pediatric Cancer), made inspirational cards and “Sock N Rolls” (for the homeless), collected over 200 pounds of food for Manna on Main (local food pantry), and will send a Christmas to many children all over the world through our work with Operation Christmas Child.
In those quiet moments where we witness our skater’s hard at work writing an inspirational message, wrapping a tube of toothpaste, boxing canned goods or celebrating over a donated pair of socks…it is then when we realize that this truly is time well spent.