A formal study released this week told us something we already knew: Georgians are some of the most generous folks in America.
Georgia's total charitable giving by individuals, foundations and corporations in 2007 is estimated to be nearly $6.7 billion, according to the joint study by Georgia State University and the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University.
"Georgians have always been generous, and these two studies provide evidence that the tradition continues today," said David H. King, president of Alexander Haas - a firm that helped coordinate the study. "Individuals in Georgia gave an estimated $5.58 billion in 2007 to meet vital needs and improve the quality of life in our communities and rural areas throughout the state and gave more than the national averages," he said.
Nationally, individual donors gave $125 more on average than other donors in 2007.
Locally, there's plenty of opportunities to jump on the giving bandwagon:
• On Saturday, members of the Thomson Rotary Club will be at Wal-Mart ringing bells and soliciting donations for The Salvation Army.
• There are several Angel Trees in our community - including one at the United States Post Office, one at the Family Y and one here at The McDuffie Mirror.
• McDuffie Regional Medical Center's Annual Tree of Love helps raise money for the hospital's auxiliary.
And if those aren't enough, there are all kinds of charities in our community that are literally begging for help.
Come on, get involved. After all, we Georgians have a reputation to live up to now.
Speaking of telling the public something we already knew, it's official: We're in a recession. You know, just in case you missed the myriad requests for public bailout, the busted banks, the rising unemployment numbers and the plummeting stock market.
The government's announcement is akin to putting a speed bump sign 50 feet after the second speed bump. Or putting a "no swimming" sign at the bottom of a raging river.
Meanwhile, this weekend marks the annual Festival Off Main, which formally kicks off the holiday season in McDuffie County. From Thursday night's tree lighting to Saturday's street festival and tour of homes to Sunday's parade, there's no shortage of activities to bring people to downtown Thomson.
And take time to head out to Dearing Friday night for their tree lighting. After all, they are part of our community, too.