We have just had our first major family holiday since the pandemic slammed into our country and reshaped so much of our lives. Our lives are bracketed by the daily graphing of infection, rising hospitalization rates, and death counts that reflect the millions of families, friends, and communities that are reeling from sudden and awful loss. I check the news at the beginning and end of the day and seem to hear the same thing. I spend too much time worrying and being scared, and the hope of the promising news on potential vaccines is tempered by a political storm that is like a never-ending category 5 hurricane.
And yet, COPE has kept on working. In this crazy time of social isolation, COPE has developed and maintained some amazing new affiliations that have brought us national partnerships with groups such as Evermore, an advocacy group working hard to legislate supports for bereaved families; working partnerships with amazingly generous groups, such as PennPac and Harvard Business School Club of NY, where business school alumni provide free technical assistance and guidance on organizational issues; nearly a dozen generous and smart professionals who have worked hard to provide a large variety of new healing and learning workshops, and the amazing performers who donated their time to prepare, rehearse and perform for our fabulous COPEstock 2020!
Our facilitators have stayed connected to our groups and families, our leadership staff pay attention to not only our survival but to COPE’s growth as well, and our Board continues to provide the guidance we need.
COPE is different right now, but our mission is the same—helping families live with the loss of a child—and assuring that no one has to grieve alone.
Just as we know how hard it is for our families– parents, siblings, grandparents, and extended family—to make this grief journey alone, COPE cannot survive alone.
Today is #GivingTuesday. What started as a local organization’s drive to grow financial support for its programs, has become a national movement to help remind friends and supporters that nonprofits survive because of the kindness and generosity of people like you. COPE families are not charged for the ongoing support groups. Some of our talented and compassionate workshop presenters do not charge for their work, while some reduce their fees, and still others are underwritten by our families. We try hard to keep COPE strong and our families safe.
But our “vaccine”, what will keep COPE healthy, is you. Simply put, your generosity is our lifeblood. I am not comfortable asking for financial support during this most unnerving financial environment, but I want COPE to survive. I want COPE to have another 20 years to be a kind and loving healing environment for families. In order to have that, I turn to you.
I wish you all more safe holidays, many Zoom and FaceTime and WhatsApp calls filled with laughter alongside the probable tears, and ask you to help COPE.