We don’t get shy talking about our activities in the communities where Simple Box has locations. We love being active members in the community because we believe people matter more than things. We’ve seen that by working together we can do a lot of good, and there is so much fun and fulfillment to be found here in the northwest.
From participating in local events to volunteering and donating to charity, there are so many ways to get involved in the local community. Since we love our communities, here are three ways we invite you to be active in your community, too.
Seek to Serve
It sounds counter-intuitive, but the best way to get the most out of your community is to be a giver rather than a taker. It’s true that most people move to a new town or neighborhood for what they will get out of it, but why not think about what you can put into it? You have skills, talents, time, and resources that can all be used to make a difference and improve the community.
Ask questions like, “Where is there a need? What is missing? Who is struggling?” Then volunteer to help.
You can also ask, “What is beautiful? What is healthy? What is fun?” And work to protect or enhance it.
It’s easy to turn on the news and hear about doom and gloom or seemingly hopeless situations. Homelessness, crime, mental health, addiction… the list seems endless. But there is so much good being done at the same time! I’m reminded of a quote by Mr. Rogers: “When I was a boy, and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ ”
For example, in most cities, the local government simply does not have the resources to help the homeless population. This can make the residents in the community feel as though they are alone and that the problem is impossible to solve. What if the best solution came from the community instead of the government? Rather than focusing on what we don’t have, what if the community rallied together to bring the resources that they do have?
Yes, it takes a lot of hard work to solve a difficult problem, but who said hard work is a bad thing? Most likely your community was initially established and made great by hard work—by teamwork—and that is exactly what will keep it great!
Ask questions like, “Where do I see people working together to meet needs? Where do I see people speaking openly and honestly about how to best use resources to meet those needs?” Then join in the conversation—listen, ask questions, and get ready to engage your muscles along with your mind!
Value What Matters
At Simple Box we have what could be considered a strange set of values coming from a storage company: People Matter More than Things.
One morning 18 years ago, I spent some time writing a list of all the things I wanted to buy and some lofty financial goals to go along with it. For some reason I was compelled to read a portion of scripture from a Bible that was sitting nearby. The first thing that caught my attention were the words of Jesus: “a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions,” (found in Luke 12:15). I was deeply challenged and inspired not to abandon all things or money, but to rethink what truly matters most.
If a person’s life doesn’t consist of accumulating more things, what does it consist of? What makes a life worthwhile? I believe it is found in strong relationships.
For the Simple Box team, part of valuing what matters most is helping to bring out the best in relationships. We love to support and encourage family-friendly events and activities that give people time to enjoy being together, have fun, and make memories.
For example, the Ski to Sea event in Bellingham mixes all of the parts of Bellingham that we love: its proximity to Baker, the water activities in Bellingham Bay, and the thriving outdoor culture that its unique location allows. Did you know that it takes thousands of unpaid volunteers to put on annual family-friendly events like Sea to Ski or Bellingham Marathon? It would simply not be possible without the participation of the locals who also love the community and took the time to give back.
Go cheer on your neighbors at a 5k road race. Attend the local farmer’s market. Volunteer at a homeless shelter. Support the events and organizations that make your community unique! You have so much to offer, and your life will be richer for it.
For more information about the events that we love in our communities, check out the Organizations We Love page.