May be a couple days late but 'tis the season to spread the cha no matter what you believe in or celebrate. Whether it’s Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, or Happy Kwanza, or any other holiday I have failed to mention, we send you all our best wishes and hope everyone had a safe and happy season! Despite all of the materialism and the political correctness, this time of year creates a spark in our minds to give back to those we care about and those we may not even know. Our country has fallen on incredibly divisive times, and as high as tensions may seem, this is all the more reason to put opinions aside and consider what we can do for others. I apologize for how naive and preachy this may sound, but whatever, I’m still in the Christmas Spirit.
There’s a lot to be said for buying that perfect gift. It shows thoughtfulness and consideration for someone. But gifts and holiday festivities aside, the holidays are about celebrating family traditions, as well as making new ones. As for one of my own family traditions, every year since I was 11, my grandfather and I have volunteered for a homeless drive called, Giving Back, Linda’s Legacy. The charity started out when, Linda Greenberg, a modern day saint, began stuffing her car full of blankets, coats, and basically anything she could get her hands on to hand out on the streets of Baltimore on Christmas Eve. Now, over 40 years later, this act of kindness has grown into an organization that gathers thousands of donations at the Riva Farmers Market to pile into about 25 Uhaul trucks to go to shelters and recovery centers in Baltimore, DC, and Annapolis.
Linda sadly passed away 2 years ago but her legacy lives on through the hundreds of volunteers from the Annapolis area who take time out of their busy holiday schedules to help out an amazing cause. Honestly, the biggest problem in running the drive is finding something for everyone to do because of how many people come out to help. Fifteen years ago my grandfather brought me to to along to deliver donations to 4 shelters in Baltimore and now my brothers, parents, aunts and uncles and cousins all show up to contribute every year.
It’s my favorite part of the Christmas season because of the perspective it offers. I have had an incredibly fortunate upbringing and this time of year makes me appreciate that more than anything else. Through spending time with my family and connecting with those who haven’t had it as good as I have, I’ve learned what the holidays are really about. Again, it doesn’t matter what you celebrate, do what you can for your family and your community this season. From all of us at Cha Vibes, HAPPY CHALIDAYS!
P.S. If you have any interest in donating or volunteering for Giving Back, the drive will be going on 9:00am-4:00 pm every day from Tuesday, December 26 to Thursday the 28th at the Riva Farmers Market and Deliveries will be made to shelters Friday morning.