The holidays mean different things to everybody. Common themes include family, generosity, gratitude and general overindulgence in food. It is a time of year where appreciation runs abound, and the spirit of giving is alive and well.
However, we at Glenn Clark Radio are asking those of you with perhaps a little extra to give back to others this holiday season. First, let me tell you all a story.
Long time listeners know that Glenn Clark and Drew Forrester had teamed up at a once relevant establishment years ago and put together their immense brain trust to create a way to give back to the community. They were pointed in the direction of Helping Up Mission, a Baltimore-based non-profit that aims to help "homeless veterans and other homeless men in need of food, shelter, and addiction recovery."
Suffice to say, the benefactors of this work are those who truly need the assistance. Those who, without the guidance and oversight of non-profits like Helping Up, would be left to their own disposal. They too have families, however their holidays lack the generosity, gratitude and certainly the overindulgence.
So as Glenn and Drew watched a man pull a small child's jacket out of the donation bin, and exclaim, "Now I'm going to have something to give my daughter for Christmas this year," the gravity of Helping Up's work became all the more clear.
That's why Glenn Clark, Drew Forrester and bassist/vocalist for All Time Low, Zack Merrick, will be at Chick-Fil-A in Nottingham Square in White Marsh from 5:30 to 8 p.m. If there are any people out there who have looked in their closets in the past few years and though, "Jeez, we have more jackets than we have bodies," or, "Nobody ever wears this, it just takes up space," come out to White Marsh tonight.
For what it's worth, Merrick said he "may bring a special guest," when he joined Glenn Clark Radio to catch up on Baltimore and discuss the importance of the work at Helping Up Mission.
"[The people at Helping Up Mission] introduced us to the whole building and the process, and they have an overnight shelter for people who need overnight [accommodations]," Merrick said. "And then, they stay there long enough, they’re kind of put into the whole program where everyone gets their own job. No matter what it is, everyone is doing something within the facility. So when you’re walking around, you think it’s all employees, but actually they’re people who are trying to get their lives back together. And they have a responsibility, which is a big thing because they have to be accountable for something — and that’s part of the process.
"Okay, let’s rebuild it; and then eventually they get out of it, and they go look for jobs while they’re still there. And they actually use what we bring in — a lot of times they don’t have clothes other than what they came in with — so they go out and they try to get jobs. And the guy we met had actually just gotten a job and he was doing motivational speaking at schools, and we thought he was one of the [representatives]. He was like, “No, man, I got this suit yesterday from you guys.”
In case you needed any added incentive, for every jacket that is donated, you receive a free Chick-Fil-A Chicken Sandwich. So, let's say you 1,000 extra coats laying around (for who knows why), come into Chick-Fil-A -- bring a huge box or bag -- and walk out with 1,000 chicken sandwiches. (Obviously exaggerated for effect, but you get the point.)
So, bring your daughter, some extra clothing and your appetite out to the Chick-Fil-A in Nottingham Square from 5:30-8 p.m., and make it a holiday season to remember everybody.