The answer to too much “stuff”

February 27th, 2013 § 0 comments

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Never mind more “stuff”–there are better ways!

A few years ago, a good friend of mine started a “stuff boycott” because of her slightly cramped living quarters. At first I tried to circumvent these rules by just buying her small things, or taking her to dinner for birthdays or holidays.  It soon dawned on me that a smarter way to honor her on these special occasions would be to make a donation in her honor to a non-profit whose mission she supported. She started to do the same for me.

We were both just as happy as if we had received some”thing” from the other. Actually, we were even happier because we felt like we were passing on our good fortune of having a great friendship to others. What I haven’t done (yet) is something that some of our most ardent supporters have done over the years: request donations to their favorite organization (in this case, the Hartford Symphony) in their honor, in lieu of gifts for the holidays or their birthday.

If you look at our concert program guide, you will see a page of people who have given in honor of or in memory of someone special in their lives. One of these special people is Elizabeth White, a long-time subscriber and supporter of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. Rather than presents at the holidays, Elizabeth asks her sons to make a contribution to the HSO in her honor.  As Elizabeth says,

“[We] really don’t need any more “things”.  I wish all the HSO audience, of any age, would make such a donation request to their friends and families.  The amount is anonymous and as you know, every little bit helps.  No amount is too small. “

We are often asked how people can go about doing this. It’s actually a lot simpler than you might think. Let your friends and family know that you’d like them to make a contribution to the HSO for an occasion (your birthday, graduation, marriage, anniversary, bar or bat mitzvah, the holidays, confirmation, etc.). They can call us, mail us or make a donation online and indicate that it is in your honor to celebrate your special occasion. They of course receive their acknowledgment for their tax-deductible donation, and we will notify you that they have made a gift in your honor, but we do not disclose the amount. You can’t get any easier than that!

So, the next time you have something to celebrate and you’re looking around realizing you don’t need anything, consider asking others to make a gift to the HSO to honor you. It’s an “extra” way to support the music you love, the community you love and avoid accumulating more things to dust!

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