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Only a few people in my life have earned the title of BAE. Who is BAE, you ask? Michael Scott, Tory Burch, and Audrey Hepburn– obviously. One of my favorite Audrey quotes is, “As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself and one for helping others.” This has become a philanthropic mantra of sorts for myself ever since I learned of her lifelong humanitarian efforts and their global impact. My personal community involvement over the past few years has opened my eyes to the perpetual need for helping hands around the world.
Who doesn’t love the American Red Cross? They’re the well known humanitarian organization that generously provides emergency assistance, disaster relief, and education inside the United States and around the world. I became a genuine advocate and devout donor when a monumentally destructive 7.0M earthquake struck the Haitian coast in 2010. I was 22, and it was the first time I’d ever felt personally affected and disturbed by an international crisis. 200,000 lives were lost and nearly 2 million innocent people were displaced from their homes. The American Red Cross announced in early 2011 that they allocated $314.7 million dollars for Haiti earthquake relief and recovery, and by March of 2011, their disaster relief totals were upwards of $484 million in donations. Ever since I saw the passion and power of their purpose, I’ve believed in their mission more than ever.
In a similar yet completely different fashion, the ARC also serves as a gentle reminder to always consider your own personal safety and security. Can you imagine if everything you owned was destroyed in a matter of seconds? I live in Florida, and I remember being terrified of our roof collapsing during the 2005 hurricane season. Yes, that was the year we were graced with the presence of Hurricane Charley (aka the strongest hurricane to strike the United States since Hurricane Andrew) and Hurricane Katrina. It’s so easy to get caught up in life’s undeniable joys and excitement without any precautions, so I’m trying to make a conscious decision to live dangerously, as Austin Powers would say, without throwing my gut feeling out the window. Even something as simple as stocking up on bottled water or checking twice to ensure your hair straightener is turned completely off, you’re always better off safe than sorry.
Happy Sunday, loves!