Send me your suggestions for the Weavers in South Alabama – the ones who care for others and make communities better from the ground up.
News, politicians, and social media drive us to different sides, tearing apart our common ground. We are bombarded with reasons to fear or hate someone else. It gets harder to act out of trust or compassion.
When I feel hopeless about where we are today, I re-read David Brooks’ piece, A Nation of Weavers, in The New York Times. He explains that social isolation is at the root of our problem, but hope comes locally from those building communities and weaving the social fabric.
Weavers are a man once deep in addiction, providing peer support and getting others into drug treatment and recovery; retired teachers forming a nonprofit to send food home with students on weekends; and animal lovers rescuing a growing number of stray dogs and cats and finding homes for them.
They pull others out of the same ditches they were once stuck in or care for someone else’s kids.
Weavers stitch hearts and souls together, one kindness at a time. Giving all they have, they say they get much more in return. Communities change when even a few people show a better way.
I did a series about Weavers last year and found so many reasons for hope in our best sides that I am doing it again. Send nominations of folks from your community, and I will talk with as many as possible. The stories will run at the end of November.
Each of us can be a Weaver instead of a ripper—adding stitches to pull our communities closer together rather than tearing them further apart.
(To nominate a Weaver, send a message to the Our Southern Souls with information about your person.)