For many of us, gratitude is a part of the holiday season. First, harvest festivals kick off a season of thanksgiving. My family favorite was always American Thanksgiving.
In December, Hanukkah comes for the Jewish with a celebration from repression of their religion and a rededication to the temple. In the Muslim religion, people honor Milad un Nabi, recognizing Muhammed's birthday through gift-giving and giving food to the poor. And of course Christmas, a time for Christians to give thanks for the birth of Jesus.
Before Christianity came to the Roman empire, December 25th was recognized as the Winter Solstice and birthday of Saturn. It was also considered a time of gift exchange, and nobles would serve dinner to their servants. Of course there are many other festivals in different cultures that occur around this time of years.Did you know that the date on which Christmas is celebrated was adopted during the rein of the first Christian Roman Emperor, Constantine.
What is interesting is that most of these festivals recognize the importance of appreciation and gratitude. You may know that psychologists suggest that a key element of happiness is found in the ability to feel gratitude. BUT I don't think we needed them to tell us. In almost all of our cultural traditions, a great emphasis is placed on creating the time and space for gift exchange and helping others. Millennia before someone tested happiness and gratitude under "lab conditions," there was already a system in place to evoke and honor thankfulness and generosity of spirit.
How cool that the very premise of our IWAT founders was to create a place to find this element of happiness! Our motto Friendship makes a difference! and our dedication to helping others embody this idea of gratitude. I am grateful to have found this base, this home away from home that has allowed me to meet women of amazing talent and kindness. It has also provided me with the opportunity here to experience generosity and appreciation through reaching out to newcomers and raising money for charity.
At the Christmas party, on Saturday, we will share the fellowship of friends, enjoy the work of our talented volunteers (who have put together an awesome program!), and appreciate the joy of watching children receive gifts from Santa. I cannot wait to experience this special time with you all.
With much love,
IWAT NEEDS YOU TO SHARE YOURSELF!
1. Hiking Club Coordinator
2. Christmas Party Helpers
3. December 14th Luncheon Helpers
4. COFFEE MORNING and BOOK CLUB Hostesses Needed!!!
Thanks to Kate L. who has volunteered to coordinate a
playgroup for IWAT! Things should start rolling after the new year and will likely be based on our LINE Activity Group format. Be on the lookout for more information to come! Or contact email@example.com to get Kate's contact info!
Saturday, December 3rd 6pm
(See picture for details)
Adults (over 12) 1200NTD
Youth (6-12) 700NTD
Children (under 6) Free
Can be purchased at any IWAT event or by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
December Formal Luncheon
Wednesday December 14th, 11am-2pm
Where: Hotel One IN Restaurant
28F Restaurant, No. 532 Ying-Tsai Rd, Taichung
Please join us for our Christmas Luncheon! Please bring a wrapped gift (300NTD value) to take part in a holiday gift exchange. (Optional)
Also at this luncheon:
Join Us or Renew your membership!
Membership Dues NT$1500
Please RSVP by Monday December 10th and leave a comment to reserve which lunch ticket you'd like:
Option A: Main dish (choose from a selection of 4 dishes, one of which is always vegetarian) + soup/salad/desert buffets--650 NT-Member Discount Price (850 NT regular)
Option B: Buffet only--550 NT Member Discount Price (750 NT regular)
Options C: No meal, just coffee/tea/cookies--250 NT Member Discount Price (350 NT regular)
*All options include coffee/tea/cookies
Fundraising and Charity in November
By the numbers:
Coffee Bear--- NT$1400
Yoga Donation--- Coming Soon
The board has been discussing the Taichung Unlocked Project. We are now in a position to begin the process of turning our out of print book into a website. The idea is that we will provide information for foreigners in Taichung using mush of the text we already have. We will also need writers of new content.
We need people with real experiences who can add to our knowledge base (Examples include "Having a baby in Taichung," "Getting a Driver's License,").
After the website is published, we plan to sell ads on the site and use any profit for charity. One big hurdle is developing the site. Our thoughts have bounced around about hiring someone to do it, but I wonder if we have anyone with experience within our group who might be willing to take it on?
Let's imagine how we can create an even bigger impact in Taichung!
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