To say 2020 has been a “complicated” year would be an understatement of massive proportions. If only Glenda the Good Witch would arrive at 12:01 am on January 1, 2021 and, with a couple of swooshes of her wand, wave all the pain, suffering and anxiety away and assure us we’d all find our way back to Kansas. Well maybe not Kansas!
At least there haven’t been any flying monkeys- as far as I know!
So if 2020 has been complicated, and 2021 will not dawn with an overnight miracle, then my message today will be simple: We could use your help.
It is traditional for many nonprofits to reach out to friends and supporters at this time of year. In that sense, this year is no different. Here we are. Usually we take this time to share our successes and the good times our women and men enjoyed in the past year. At JCL we have always tried to set the bar high. We measured success by how many happy faces we saw along the way, by the level of community engagement and experience our folks enjoy, by the pride we could take in knowing their lives were full, happy- and safe.
Not 2020. Like all of you, much of the fun was absent from our day-to-day lives. Our usual emphasis on safety became an even bigger emphasis on S-A-F-E-T-Y. Bold, capital letters. In March we turned off the fun spigot, put our game faces on and went to work in ways that we haven’t experienced before. Wear your mask, wash your hands, clean, clean again, and clean some more. We literally took the “C” (community) out of JCL. We locked the doors and practically put “Keep Out” signs up at our homes.
Yet, like Dorothy’s journey on the yellow brick road, our journey is full of employees who have brains, hearts and courage they might not have known they had.
And let’s not forget the women and men we support. They- and their families - have made immense sacrifices. Some families have not seen their JCL family member in person since March.
We have not been unscathed by Covid. Despite our best efforts, it has entered into our lives. This marathon has a large hill in front of the finish line.
We will get to Oz. And our employees, driven by their intellect, big hearts and valor under duress, will get us there. Our JCL women and men are only as successful as the workforce they rely on every day to be there for them.
As you can imagine, maintaining a stable financial outlook has challenged us in ways we have never seen before. One small example of additional Covid costs comes in the form of personnel protective equipment. In March 2020 we were able to purchase a box of 100 gloves for $2.50. Now, that same box, if we can even get it, costs $11.50. This is why we need, and are grateful for your continued support.
If you are one of the many who have already made your annual gift to JCL, thank you from the bottom of our hearts. If you are going to make your annual gift today, you may do so by returning the enclosed envelope or visiting our website,
www.jcl-ct.org and clicking on donate.
Never has wishing someone a Happy and Healthy New Year been more profound. Stay safe and we’ll gather again soon.