Tis’ the season for festive gatherings, when we take a stroll with friends and family down memory (and “candy cane”) lane and make new memories along the way, right? Not so fast. Like most of 2020, the holidays are looking and feeling much different this year.
Rather than being able to hang out together, we’re masking up, practicing social distancing and missing each other. As social creatures, the lack of being able to truly connect in person has been a colossal bummer, but we have not given up on pursuing meaningful connections.
Since it’s Giving Tuesday, here’s a peek at how we’ve been filling our cup from a distance (with a fun Haley Wonsley family history lesson for good measure).
Intesa is giving with intention.
Over the past year, we’ve upped our contributions to organizations we believe in. While they can’t replace in-person touch points, expanding our volunteer roles and philanthropic giving to local nonprofits has been giving us joy.
This year, Margie continued her service as chair of the YMCA of San Diego County’s Annual Campaign, moderated numerous Zoom webinars for local nonprofits, and in November, emceed the annual #KevTalk for the San Diego Downtown Partnership. In 2021, she’ll chair the LEAD San Diego Visionary Awards, continue her work with the mission-driven organizations that fill her cup and improve the community.
Maddy is filling the role of Chair at Civic San Diego and we’re so proud of that organization’s work to bring more affordable housing to the region and support small business. This past year, AmeriCorps interns funded by Civic were able to assist small businesses in Southeast San Diego, Downtown, and other communities through a collaboration with local business improvement districts. This partnership was key to helping many businesses stay open during Covid-19. Maddy also continues to enjoy her time on the Board of the USS Midway Museum which is routinely voted one of the Top 10 museums in the country by TripAdvisor.
Oh! And don’t forget about North County. Haley is serving on the board of the Boys and Girls Club of Oceanside. As it turns out, giving back is in her DNA:
Recently, Haley’s family rediscovered a 1997 article written by her grandfather in which Grandpa Pete writes about what it was like to be the inspiration for and one of the first youth beneficiaries of, the Grenville Baker Boys & Girls Club in New York in the 1940’s. Witnessing a group of engaged adults care about him and his neighborhood friends enough to inspire the creation of the Club would prove a formative experience in his life. The Club has gone on to positively impact thousands of young lives in its 73-year history. Grandpa Pete went on to be involved in enhancing and helping to create clubs throughout his life.
In the article, Grandpa Pete writes:
“At the heart of [the Boys & Girls Club’s] philosophy is the belief that children from all walks of life need to be guided in developing the qualities needed to become responsible citizens and leaders… The philosophy is still true today and shows that how we choose to dedicate our time makes a difference.”
“Even though my grandpa is no longer with us, as I read the article, I felt that sense of connection to him that I had been missing for more than a decade,” Haley said. “Today, I am continuing a legacy I didn’t even know I had through my leadership role with the Boys & Girls Club of Oceanside. We’re helping students adapt to virtual learning and providing more than 30,500 free meals to families in need; it was also just named one of the California’s Nonprofit’s of the Year. I’m so honored and humbled to continue on my grandpa’s path of giving back to our local youth.”
As Intesa colleagues connect with intent and a sense of purpose to improve our communities, Grandpa Pete’s words ring true and we are taking them to heart. Not just on Giving Tuesday, but every day.