'Tis the Season by Kathy Brockman

December finds most of us celebrating some major holiday. Whether your celebration is religious or secular in nature, it usually involves some form of gift-giving. Most of us enjoy receiving gifts, but we usually enjoy giving as well. The reasons may vary, but it's frequently a pleasant experience for each of us.
 
That brings me to ACB and the first point – receiving gifts. It's good to take a moment occasionally to reflect on what we have been given. So what does ACB do for us? Many of us enjoy going to the annual conference and convention. This is an educational time filled with friendship, fun, and many opportunities. Then there is advocacy - a time-consuming process involving both staff and members to educate the community and legislators.
 
ACB advocates for audible traffic signals so that we can safely cross streets. ACB is fighting for accessible currency that will enable us to independently manage money, and working with the auto manufacturers to add sound to their electric-powered, quiet vehicles so we can hear them.  ACB provides scholarships to further the educational goals of blind students. Through the efforts of ACB, we can now receive accessible Social Security notices. We receive "The ACB Braille Forum," which keeps us in touch and informed as well.  And let's not forget ACB Radio, which serves to keep us abreast of blindness-related happenings from around the world and entertains us too. 
 
These are just a few of the wonderful things that ACB does, and all of them cost money to provide. Wouldn't a holiday gift for ACB be a nice thank-you? Some prefer to make a large gift at the end of the calendar year for tax reasons. That can be a challenge for others - which is where the MMS (Monthly Monetary Support) program comes in.
 
How can you give such a gift to ACB?  You can make a donation monthly by having it automatically put on a charge card or deducted from a checking account. To join, visit the web site at www.acb.org/node/28 or call our Minnesota office at 1-800-866-3242. Payments can be processed either on the 10th or 22nd of the month.
 
Another benefit of the MMS program is that you may designate up to 50 percent of your monthly gift to your state or a special-interest affiliate. In this way, you can help two organizations with one contribution!  So enjoy your holiday season, celebrations, friends, the great gifts you receive - and take a moment to give back to others and ACB.