Make a Difference Day

Saturday, Oct. 24, marks the 28th National Make a Difference Day, the largest national day of community service.

Here at CoPeace, it may truly be the reason we exist today. It’s when we individually reached a point in our careers, and focused on a greater cause, and committed to make an impact, that our impact-driven company, CoPeace, was born.

As we sit with our brothers and sisters from around the world in a pandemic these past seven months, we see homelessness, divisiveness, hunger and climate crisis all around us. It’s been the most dire of times for so many of us, I’m not sure if there has ever been a more needed time for community than now.

Making a difference can take many different forms. One can make a difference by checking in on the elderly, or collecting cans for a food pantry, or picking up litter. There are many volunteer opportunities and acts to help mitigate the planet’s bigger issues such as plastic waste, greenhouse gas emissions, and water scarcity.

The local chapters of United Way have done an incredible job within their local communities, mobilizing to different causes.

Even the smallest of efforts can change a community and subsequently the world.

The Aspen Strategy Group is leading an effort to establish a National Service. A non-political program to bring “community” back, front and center, providing jobs and assistance where it’s most needed. A program that could help working parents teach STEM to under-privileged communities and close the opportunity gap.

When I think of the power and intention of this day, I can’t help but think of my recently departed friend Brent Johnson. B.J. was a scout for the Houston Rockets and a pillar in the basketball industry.

B.J. had an infectious smile and made time for everyone around him. He was the ultimate giving person.

His impact was felt by all he touched. To aspiring basketball players, he encouraged them; to community members, he welcomed them and shared; to industry colleagues, he treated them with respect.

He made sure you knew that you were valued by him. His character was exemplary. All of his days on Earth were like how I lived my best day as a person.

You may know what I am talking about. That one day, when I was my absolute best as a human being, when I was able to put everything aside, and do something absolutely selfless. Something that afterwards I would literally glow, basking from it. That’s how B.J. was every day.

I think we all know someone like that. Someone that was or is such a special soul that makes everything around them better. We marvel at them and it motivates us to be better versions of ourselves.

Saturday, Oct. 24 is our opportunity to do as B.J. would do. An opportunity to be selfless and be our best versions of ourselves for National Make A Difference Day. Please join me!

Leigh Klein  formerly worked as the Director of Sport Strategy at CoPeace. As a forward-thinking holding company, CoPeace is building a portfolio of carefully selected for-profit companies with measurable social and environmental impact. To learn more about impact investing, check out CoPeace’s Intro to Impact Investing.