A Generosity Hat Trick
I was out shoveling my driveway this past March when my neighbour Harvey pulled over and rolled down his window to chat. Newly retired and on his way home from goaltending a shinny hockey match (it was just days before city arenas in Calgary closed due to COVID-19) he was keen to tell me how much he’d enjoyed playing alongside a bunch of 20-year-olds.
Taking Time Out to Connect
With most of my driveway still buried under more than a foot of snow, the voice in in my head chided get back to shoveling you don’t have a lot of time to talk, but Harvey’s enthusiasm inspired a longer visit filled with stories from his years of experience in net. Eventually, our conversation turned to my son’s budding aptitude as a minor hockey goalie, and the exorbitant cost of equipment.
Harvey nodded knowingly and proceeded to get out of his car, open the back hatch and give me a tour of his goalie equipment. He was proud to show it off to someone who understood that aspect of the sport, especially his NHL replica goalie mask. It was very nice! I mentioned my son had outgrown his gear again and we were heading to the mall that afternoon to look for a new goalie mask. Reminded of our respective ‘To-do’ lists, we said goodbye and Harvey headed home.
A Generous Assist
Later that afternoon, my son and I worked our way through the shelves of the sporting goods store trying to find a good quality mask in our price range. Suddenly, my phone rang. I listened incredulous as my wife explained that Harvey had just dropped off a $200.00 cheque to help pay for our son’s new goalie mask. He wanted to make sure the aspiring goalie was protected by good quality equipment. We were totally blown away! What an unexpected and generous gift!
Like Hockey, Generosity is a Team Sport
In the four years since we moved onto the block, we have become part of a community knit together by generosity – from impromptu dinner invitations to helping neighbours mow their lawns or even the giving of gifts like football tickets or money for a hockey mask. Best of all, I see generosity sprouting up in the next generation; my son can’t wait to pay forward Harvey’s kindness by passing on his outgrown goalie equipment to a younger kid who needs it.
My neighbour gave us more than a cheque that day. His simple act of generosity reminded us all about the profound joy of giving. I see this same joy when I am helping Abundance Canada clients create their Generosity Plans, and I feel so privileged to help them achieve their goals. I have always been inspired by their stories of generosity, and since we moved to our new neighbourhood, the connection between living and giving generously has become even clearer.
It only takes one act of kindness to get a game of ‘generosity shinny’ started in your neighbourhood. How will you connect with your ‘team’ today?
Contributed by Kevin Davidson
Gift Planning Consultant