The year 2020 threw several big challenges our way. We weathered a year-long pandemic, witnessed social unrest, and renewed awakening around diversity and inclusion. As we march directly into 2021 we stand optimistic that this year will be better than the last. I personally believe this will be true.
One thing 2020 taught me is that there are far more good people in this world than those who are not. When faced with the pandemic, an industry banded together and created a vaccine. When the spotlight was shined on inequality, Americans intensified their focus on justice and equality for all. While we still have much work to do, we also have much to build on – no house gets built without laying the first brick. I believe we are on our way to building a beautiful home where all are welcomed and where all can feel comfortable being who they truly are.
Rodney Nubin, Chair Socius
Artavia Clay, Socius
Eric DeRose, Socius
Rick Grimes, Professional Risk Solutions
Patrick Hanley, Socius
Hayley Phillips, Socius
Eric Shapiro, Socius
Nichole Ward, Socius
In the United States, approximately 34 million people live in poverty – one in ten Americans. The poverty rate for children is even higher (one in six). And about half of the Americans living below the poverty line live in deep poverty.
The effects of poverty and living in poverty extend far beyond hunger and malnutrition. Limited access to education and other basic services, social discrimination and exclusion, disabilities, restricted access to participation in the democratic process…This is the daily reality for many Americans.
Poverty is a complex problem, with no quick fixes. The Socius Foundation has been extremely active and generous in giving to many poverty-facing charities. But there are ways we as individuals can help. Please consider donating time, money or goods to a local or national charity focused on poverty and related issues.
Here are links to a few vetted, established national charities:
Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the action of human beings.
(sources: US Census, charities.org)
January 27th is International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The date commemorates the anniversary of the liberalization of Auschwitz in 1945, which was the largest Nazi extermination camp. More than six million Jews and eleven million others lost their lives at the hands of the Nazis and collaborators during this terrible period. Roughly two thirds of Europe’s Jewish population was wiped out.
As genocide, atrocities, anti-Semitism and other hateful discourses have continued to persist in
the post-WWII world, this date of remembrance is unfortunately as topical as ever. Let us avow our unwavering commitment to counter anti-Semitism, racism, and other forms of intolerance that lead to group-targeted violence of any kind.
To learn more about this topic and about International Holocaust Remembrance Day, click on these links:
by: Eric Shapiro, Committee
On a personal note, remembering the Holocaust tragedy strikes a strong chord for me. My mother’s parents lived in Poland prior to the war. My grandfather immigrated to the United States a few years prior to the troubles starting, but my grandmother had to stay in Poland until such time as he got situated and could bring her over. As our family’s story goes, she finally got out of the country only a few weeks before the Nazis started to shut things down. Many of my grandparents’ friends and neighbors were subsequently sent to concentration camps and never heard from again.
If not for my grandparents finding a way to escape, they may have died along with many of their friends and community. My mother would never have been born here in the United States, she would have never met my father, and I and my siblings would not be here. It is scary to think that my family’s past and future, including my kids and future generations, would not have existed if she did not get out. And as fortunate as I feel, by the same token it is so sad to think of all the other legacies and families that ended during that time.
(I like them with either apple sauce or sour cream. Enjoy!!!)