Could be the case that I’m an unrelenting optimist, but I am consistently hard-pressed to come across a month that isn’t possibly the best. These are not bad problems to have.
With November comes the onslaught of holiday fever; a quick peek around Michigan Avenue or your local CVS ought to serve as sufficient reminder that you are already way behind on your preparations. In my younger, angstier days, these reminders sent me into an ideological tizzy and pedantic railings against a commercial establishment that exploits average consumers’ latent neuroses into grotesque demonstrations of empty consumption but thank goodness I’ve outgrown that phase, am I right?! These days, I enjoy the spectacle of festivity because we do live in a chaotic world full of hard truths and grave injustices and honestly, if a window display offers a moment of levity and beauty, maybe we (I) should chill out, consider some perspective, and thank my lucky stars I live in a city that affords a few seconds every day of unabashed loveliness.
I guess what I’m saying is I love the holidays. I dig the spirit of whimsy and subtle mischief, and perhaps it goes without saying that we at Zealous Good are all about the spirit of giving and of fraternity. We believe in the power of a community that exists beyond neighborhood or class boundaries, between causes and action. The holidays – with the many food and toy drives, the charity and good will, the huddling together of a city that is on the verge of being absolutely blasted by the frigid winter front – present a particularly ripe moment to appreciate this.
This all serves as preface to happily declaring that this holiday season will bring a ton of great news for Zealous Good and our partners. In addition to some exciting projects we’ll soon be unveiling, we have so many phenomenal organizations to introduce to you. Watch our Charity Wish Lists page grow every week, and be sure to check in here for frequent spotlights on terrific Chicago nonprofits.
We’ll start off this week with Changing Worlds, a wonderfully apt organization to embody the spirit of community and compassion that comes with the season.
Changing Worlds is an educational arts nonprofit organization whose mission is to foster inclusive communities through oral history, writing and art programs that improve student learning, affirm identity and enhance cross-cultural understanding.
We work towards our mission through separate, but interconnected program areas and activities that include:
- in school and after-school partnership programs
- professional development institutes and workshops for teachers
- community outreach programs
- traveling exhibitionsChanging Worlds envisions communities that advance the use of personal stories and the arts as vehicles to honor the richness of its diverse cultures and foster a greater appreciation and respect of cultural differences