As we embark on 2012, I can't help but recognize just how much I have to be grateful for this year. My sons, Harrison and Zack, are juniors in college and high school, respectively. They are happy, healthy, vibrant young men (okay, so I'm biased but it's true). And they continue to teach me lessons in gratitude. It's through their giving that I'm inspired to give. From Zack serving as a "Tree Musketeer" and planting trees in El Segundo to Harrison suggesting I launch a "Libby Cares" non-profit campaign on my website, they continue to be great examples of service to others.
While I haven't fully set my long-term charitable campaign in motion, my Libby Gill & Company team members and I have tried to make a difference in the lives of people who, simply put, have less than we have, at least, in terms of material goods. In the past few years, we "adopted" Salvation Army families to holiday shop for, we gave gently worn women's suits to Dress for Success, and we kicked off a tee-shirt drive for an orphanage in Kenya - thanks to the hundreds of people who donated!
This season, my older son Harrison inspired me to make a donation to Kiva.org on behalf of all the wonderful clients, colleagues and partners I've had to good fortune to work with this year. Kiva, a non-profit whose tagline is "Loans That Change Lives," offers micro-loans to entrepreneurs in emerging and economically challenged countries to help them launch and build local businesses. Harrison, at the ripe old age of 21, has already given ten loans to Kiva. In fact, as each micro-loan is repaid, he rolls the donation over into a new loan for a different company under Kiva's oversight.
We chose a group, run by eleven women and one man, that runs a grocery store in Bolivia. Our loan will help them continue to serve their community and take care of themselves and their families. Thanks, Broadview Mortgage, for putting the spotlight on the joy of giving!
Libby Gill, Business Coach and Author of You Unstuck