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A New Year Filled With Hope

painting of eagle flying over mountain symbolizing hope

I can't recall ever feeling as hopeful for a New Year as I am right now.

I am thinking not about resolutions but of connections with people, adventures near and far, and basic niceties like eating out and hugging that I hope to do soon again. We will almost certainly be back to a more normal situation sometime in the new year. It's now been about ten days since people in our region began receiving their vaccinations and only a few days until those people complete the 3-week process for their second and final inoculation. The first tier - protection for the most vulnerable people, will be accomplished, and the next group of people eligible for the vaccine will begin before we know it.

Time passes quickly. Every week and month will bring news of welcomed normality as life becomes safer. We will be booking long-awaited travel plans. Our local charities, government, volunteers, leaders, donors, and entrepreneurs will come together to open community businesses and get all of those who have been most hurt by the pandemic back on their feet. Our society's confidence and optimism are apparent in the stock market and in news stories.

In 2021 the Community Foundation will continue to be part of our community's recovery.

The Caregiver Support Initiative is expanding, along with the Community Foundation's work on educating residents to prevent financial abuse and scams.

We will break ground on building ten new homes for low-income working families through the Community Housing Land Trust.

Community Foundation housing work is focused now on helping families own their first home and build equity. Along with the pride of ownership, they will enjoy the assurance of a fixed mortgage payment rather than the annual increases they experienced as renters. Our robust local economy and the dramatically increasing housing costs have made us determined to address the housing crisis.

I'm excited because I know 2021 will be a great year. I am eager to begin carrying out the plans we've made, getting past the pandemic, and anticipate opportunities will come in unexpected ways.

Although we will not be together, let's celebrate New Year's Eve and Day as never before. Fill out hearts and homes with hope, keep and grow our positive attitudes, and cherish the things we can do again as the year progresses. For me, every restaurant meal will taste a bit better, every movie with popcorn will be a bit more satisfying, and every hug will be a bit warmer.

Happy New Year 2021!!!!

Chris Askin, President/CEO 775-333-5499

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