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How Much Help Hope Needs

Jeff Shuck
June 1, 2020

Seven years ago when we founded Plenty, we used one line to summarize our commitment and our ethos: Hope needs help. It is a sentence we've used again and again as we've grown. We've written about it; we've given keynotes about it; we've built not only our manifesto but our entire business around it. 

Seven years later, with over 100,000 people dead in the United States from COVID-19 in only three months, the economy in tatters, stay-at-home orders replaced by National Guard-enforced curfews, yet another African-American dead at the hands of those sworn to protect and serve, centuries of systemized racism and oppression boiling over into the streets, I've got to admit – I had no idea how much help hope would need. 

Five years ago I wrote that "the world isn't on fire – you are." But factually, it seems hard to deny that the world is on fire. Over the weekend, we watched cities around the country burning. I watched it on my social media feeds, too, in intense arguments among friends – people who I know would enjoy each other if they met in person, but between whom the echo chamber that is Facebook has cultivated a distanced, sterile antipathy. 

There's so much to say, and even more to do, and I'll admit that today I'm just muddling through. Gestures of comfort feel trite. Words of inspiration feel elusive. I see how much hope needs help, but the help seems so heavy. Hard to lift. Hard to get my hands around.

But I also know the muddling – this is a start. At a time when the world is calling us to BEGIN, we have to start somewhere. And so I will start today with sorrow and grief.

I will muddle through, and I will have faith that in that muddling, I will pick up steam.

I will make my own momentum. I will join with others, and in our knowledge of how much help hope needs, we will help. 

Peace to you all. 

A Few Thoughts In Advance of #GivingTuesdayNow

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