Column: The Holiday Spirit in Our Communities

During this time of year, I’m reminded of the words of the writer Oscar Wilde who said, “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.” That is indeed the case with acts of volunteerism and charity.

Although it is during the holiday season that our thoughts often turn to how we can help our less fortunate neighbors, I am endlessly moved by the spirit of generosity and civic-mindedness that I see in our communities year-round.

Almost every day I interact with people in our communities who selflessly donate their time and money to support a myriad of worthy organizations and causes. Almost all of these individuals do so quietly and without any official recognition, taking simple satisfaction from the impact that their actions have on improving life for others in our communities. To me, each of these people is a local hero.

During the holiday season and year-round there are countless opportunities to volunteer in our communities — from donating food and stocking shelves at a food pantry, to being a mentor for an at-risk youth, to supporting efforts to end domestic violence, to supporting veterans in need.

Volunteering to serve in local government is another great way to make a difference. Municipal government relies heavily on volunteers from the community who can offer their time and unique expertise on various boards and committees. Often there are vacancies that need to be filled. I enthusiastically encourage you to reach out to your Town or City Hall to find out about such opportunities to get involved and play a greater role in your community.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?” If you want to discuss local volunteer or charitable opportunities, please feel free to contact my office at (617) 722-1206 or and we would be happy to provide you with ideas and contact information for many worthy local organizations in our communities.

I wish you and your family a joyous holiday season and a very happy New Year.