We are just approaching the one year anniversary of this catastrophic storm and I am overwhelmed with gratitude for all the people who have worked so hard helping to get these communities back on their feet. I'm proud of my team and the countless individuals from each and every one of these towns we've worked in. Let me make something VERY clear - these towns are being rebuilt by their own residents, period. If we've played a part, it's been just as facilitators. The true grit has come from the locals who rose to the occasion and put their head down to do what needed to be done - for them, and their neighbors in need. Throughout this project I've seen the very best of what humanity has to offer... and I've also seen immense heartbreak and despair. But the one thing that resonates the most for me is the realization that no matter what we are all in this together. Not just something like Sandy, but life as a whole. We are a dynamic species with incredible strength and compassion... and when we collectively embark on something - there is absolutely NOTHING we can't do. Ha...! I sound like a football coach giving a halftime pep-talk...! But all jokes aside, I've been seeing examples of this collective power we have, each and every day... and it's nothing short of remarkable.
Now I'm gonna go even more cliche on y'all and drop a Gandhi quote, but I honestly feel it speaks to this notion that despite all the heaviness and adversity that gets thrown at us -- we will ALWAYS persevere... together.
"When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have won. There have always been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it--always." - Mahatma Gandhi
We still have an incredibly long way to go - there is conflict and strife in nearly every corner of the world, but there is also love and truth in those same corners to fight it. This is the natural order of the universe, but take it from my man, Gandhi, the latter will always prevail... always.
Big thanks to all of you who have supported our journey - with Sandy and beyond. With clean water programs in 12 countries and our Sandy initiative still going strong, we are firing on all cylinders.
Lastly, we are just finishing up our 1 year impact report for the Sandy initiative which I'll be sending out shortly. It will also be available on our site so please feel free to spread the word. It is very in depth on the stats and details of everything we've done throughout this entire project.
And again, BIG BIG thanks to all our partners and supporters, but I want to say a special shout out to those who made John G's rebuild possible - KIND Snacks, Home Depot, and Catholic Charities...