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Natural Awakenings Columbia

Show Some Love …

Feb 07, 2021 08:40AM ● By Annette Briggs

Happy February, loyal readers! When most of us think of February, the topic that often comes to mind is love, especially when considering Valentine’s Day. It’s the “love month.” I have covered the topic of love from various angles numerous times in previous publisher’s letters. I have often portrayed love as a heavy-lifting verb, full of action and commitment, ready to break through stubborn manmade barriers, such as prejudice, unacceptance, alienation and injustice. “Love is not only something you feel, it is something you do.” These are the heartfelt words of American evangelist David Wilkerson. And I whole-heartedly agree. True love takes decisive action.

That said, I want to take a fresh look at love this time—same underlying principles, but applied in just a little different way. How many of you know that the state of South Carolina is a very popular tourist destination for millions of travelers, notwithstanding COVID-19? For sure, the pandemic has negatively impacted tourism in the Palmetto State—same as it has in virtually every other state across the nation that relies heavily on tourism revenue. Even so, we have a crown jewel of a state admired by many. From the beautiful mountains of the upstate to the delightful beaches of the low country and coastal areas, and popular destinations in between, South Carolina has much to offer.

So, as Tina Turner once asked, “What’s love got to do with it?” Drumroll for the answer … Everything, as it relates to maintaining, sustaining and revitalizing our communities—particularly here in the Midlands, where we call home. I hear so many people say, “I love South Carolina.” Is that really true when tangible action is the determining factor? We all want cleaner water to drink; air to safely breathe; and rivers and lakes to leisurely canoe, boat or swim in. Honestly, it nearly breaks my heart as I travel around the Midlands and see litter, obvious neglect, abuse and misuse. We can do better than this, especially with so many guests that visit us each year.

Put love into sustainable action! This is the very heartbeat and mission of my magazine! There are so many great agencies on the front lines of sustainability, fighting to improve the quality and conditions of our geographical areas and natural resources—and they need our help. The long list of organizations and agencies that work very hard to keep South Carolina beautiful includes Keep the Midlands Beautiful; PalmettoPride; Lexington and Richland county agencies; DHEC; Sonoco Recycling; the University of South Carolina’s Office of Sustainability; the South Carolina Wildlife Federation; and city of Columbia department agencies, such as CPAC and Columbia Water. These entities are constantly providing opportunities for concerned and impassioned citizens.

How about a round of applause for all of these valuable partners of Natural Awakenings of Columbia. Keep an eye out for volunteer opportunities right here in my magazine. Show some love by jumping in and helping in some way!

Loving in action,

Annette Briggs

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