Helping Others is Good for the Soul

I've been in the PR/communications business for over 14 years now. I've covered some pretty interesting stories as a reporter -- some fun, some not so fun.

As a PR professional, I've had the same experiences. The dot-com era was great for me as a tech geek because all I used to pitch were stories about innovation. There has been times where we had to work really hard to develop angles for stories just so we can make then newsworthy -- a very tough assignment at times.

However, one of the great things about the PR business is that you get to meet a lot of interesting people who are doing some great things for those in need. That need can vary from under privileged kids, adults with substance abuse problems, those trying to squash homelessness and times where those who are very sick need a second opinion that can mean life or death.

Now, I typically don't write about my clients on my blog, but in this case I felt so compelled to do so because yesterday was a day that really put some things into perspective for me.

First, there's The Dimock Center, an important community institution serving Boston's inner-city neighborhoods of Roxbury, Dorchester, Mattapan, Jamaica Plain and Roslindale. Located on nine historic acres in the heart of the Egleston Square section of Roxbury, Dimock provides vital health and human services to thousands of individuals and families each year. This week we, along with our sister agency Digitas, helped organize a toy drive and when I tell you that it was successful, it was HUGE. We filled up a Ford Edge front to back with all types of toys. Check out the post @ecmsl wrote over at the PR Finish Line blog.

Secondly, I staffed an interview with the Boston Globe's Adrian Walker, who interviewed one of Dimock's staff members who has gone through hell and back. I won't get into specific details as the story has yet to run (scheduled for next week), but when I tell you that this particular individual looked adversity in the face and beat it down, I really mean it. It is a touching story of how Dimock helped this man get his life, family and health back and now is a successful professional who is giving back two-fold.

The second story I'd like to share is with my client Best Doctors, an employer benefit that helps members get the right diagnosis and treatment. Yesterday, a family whose son was in hospice care at five months old, came to visit the company and thank the employees personally for saving their son's life. Check out the post over at @efalchuk's See First Blog. The only way you can avoid choking up about this story is if you are as cold as ice. Here's a family who was making funeral arrangements for their son, who now are celebrating the holidays with smiles from ear to ear. Thankful doesn't do any justice to how the family feels. Our team placed a great Boston Herald story about the baby's case and was able to secure coverage with two local TV stations -- Fox 25 and WHDH-TV

My point to all this is that it is so great and heart warming to hear stories of people helping people. This is especially true around the holidays when we, as a society, tend to get wrapped up in our own self indulgence, that we forget to think about others -- me included. This week and these stories changed that for me.

What are you doing to help others?