Remedy for Post-Election Stress: Let’s Work Together to Make the World Suck Less

I can’t help but think that those waiting on election night for Hillary’s victory to materialize were like guests at a wedding waiting for a groom who never shows up. The guests left bewildered, some moving from head scratching to vitriol, as they realized the predicted union between Hillary and America would not be consummated.

Since the election, the nation has been divided between those encouraged by what they believe will be real change for an improved America and those fearful about the future. Yet, in both cases , there is a fundamental awareness that now — more than ever — we need to help each other, especially those overlooked, underemployed and underserved. We may disagree about which people to help and when, but that does not undermine what I believe is the fundamental goodness of most Americans. Indeed, it is this goodness that unites us.

While the President-elect focuses on his transition and Hillary regroups, Americans can step up to the plate and do good. Let’s make the world suck less. Indeed, many are doing so already.

62.5 million Americans doing good

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that between September 2014 and September 2015, 62.5 million Americans volunteered their time for nonprofit organizations that offer social and community services, support youth and educational programs, and address civic, healthcare and environmental issues, among other things.

And here are some key points. The volunteers crossed race, gender and ethnicities. They represented all age groups, educational levels and economic backgrounds. They included the employed and unemployed. More than anything, the work of these volunteers demonstrated that Americans — despite their differences — are ready, able and willing to work together.

So how many opportunities are there for you to do some good? Over a million. Literally. There are more than 1.5 million tax-exempt organizations in the US, including many dedicated to bringing about social change. Join one and maybe you can overcome your post-election stress. You won’t be alone.

Youth and women fueling change

DoSomething.org, “a global movement for good,” founded in 2014 has already united 5.4 million young people in making positive changes in their communities in the hopes of making the world “suck less.” Impact 100, a collective giving model for women that has taken hold in over 20 states, including my home state of New Jersey, has united thousands of women in making big-time grants to local nonprofits to the tune of $42 million.

Don’t know where to volunteer? Check out All for Good. It lists over 300,000 projects across the country that can use your help.

The time to act is now. The betterment of America doesn’t just rest in the hands of presidents and politicians. We share that responsibility, regardless of who celebrated on election night. Let’s make the world suck less.

Helene Kennedy is a communications professional and marketing strategist who works extensively with the nonprofit community in professional and volunteer capacities.

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