Let me offer a simple “thank you” to the staff, volunteers and leadership of the Galveston nonprofit community. All of us who live, work and recreate on this little barrier island benefit from these unheralded heroes — in good times and not so good times.

In the good times, when we enjoy a Galveston Symphony Orchestra concert at The Grand 1894 Opera House or attend a play at Island East-End Theatre Co. or stroll the downtown galleries during Galveston Art Center’s ArtWalks.

In the good times, when we take our guests to shop on The Strand or for a bike ride through one of our historic districts, enjoying the decades of work of the Galveston Historical Foundation or we drive Broadway and remember the devastation wreaked 12 years ago by Hurricane Ike and the amazing “re-treeing” of our city led by the Galveston Island Tree Conservancy.

In the good times, when we talk to a family whose child has been helped by a Teen Health clinic or a family who has sought counseling services from Family Service Center of Galveston County.

In the good times, when we drive down 45th Street passing the old Guadalupe school and church campus knowing the good work that the Resource and Crisis Center of Galveston County is doing on this beautifully renovated and usefully repurposed complex of buildings. Or our trip takes us along Avenue S past the Child Advocacy Center and we know people are inside fighting for Galveston’s youngest residents.

In the good times, the work of Galveston’s nonprofit organizations impacts the spectrum of people who are living, working and recreating on this island ... all of us ... in one way or another.

When the not-so-good times come, Galveston nonprofit organizations answer our individual and collective calls for help.

In the not so good times, when food insecurity is widespread, we call on Seeding Galveston, Galveston’s Own Farmers Market, Galveston County Food Bank and other members of the newly created 409 Food Collaborative.

In the not-so-good times, when financial security has been dramatically disrupted and we need help to see us through, we seek out Catholic Charities and St. Vincent’s House.

In the not-so-good times, when the ranks of our homeless swell, we look to Our Daily Bread, Galveston Central Church and The Salvation Army.

In the not-so-good times, when we need special counseling, legal or social/emotional, we ask for assistance from Lone Star Legal Aid and the National Alliance on Mental Illness-Gulf Coast.

In the not-so-good times, when small-business owners seek a path forward, we turn to the Galveston Regional Chamber of Commerce.

In the not-so-good times, when island foundations band together to activate the Galveston County Recovery Fund, we turn to United Way of Galveston to serve as the administrative and fiscal agent for philanthropy’s work.

The time is far overdue to recognize the work of Galveston’s nonprofit organizations and the impact they have on our community — in good times and in not-so-good times.

If your circumstances permit, I encourage you to contribute to the recovery fund or one or more of these unheralded heroes.

Visit www.recoverygalveston.com to learn more about the recovery fund and the work of these intrepid organizations.

Betty Massey is executive director of the Mary Moody Northen Endowment and serves as chair of the Galveston County Recovery Fund.


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