Thursday, August 14, 2008
A Good Neighbor
We sat on a screen porch eating cheese and crackers, talking about some of the hard things that happen in life and some of the pleasures, like sitting on a screen porch with wonderful people eating cheese and crackers, talking about some of the hard things that happen in life and some of the pleasures. Over the course of a few hours, the summer breeze we enjoyed was punctuated by a light rain shower, sigh, heaven on earth.
Here's a picture of giving, creative family for you: Janet Laube is a social worker and education associate at the contemporary art museum, her husband is a doctor/professor, her daughter is a singer, her son is a former peace corps volunteer who runs an eco-lodge in Nicaragua. I was thinking her donation would have something to do with the work she does with people, from little girls to big men, helping them regain control over their violence and aggression. I thought maybe she donated to a project in Nicaragua that her son is connected to. Janet also works in the education department at MMoCA, we met there when I was an education assistant for MMoCA during graduate school. Thus, I thought I wondered if her donation would have something to do with the arts. Once again, I was surprised when Janet told me the story about why she donates to Neighborhood House.
If you are African, and live within 200 miles of Madison, you know Neighborhood house because you've been to a graduation or wedding party there. If you are not African, but you are local to Madison, you know Neighborhood house because it the oldest community center in Madison. Neighborhood House offers affordable gathering spaces for groups to use, runs a food pantry, and creates programs and resources for everyone from youth to seniors.
Neighborhood House is the closest community center to Janet's home and she believes in it because she believes in working together as a community to help one another. In fact, she's so committed to Neighborhood house that she serves as president of the board of directors...a fact I would not have known if not for a beautiful summer evening sitting on a screen porch eating cheese and crackers, talking about some of the hard things that happen in life and some of the pleasures.