Healing the Effects

Guest: Audrey Alvarado, Executive Director, National Council of Nonprofit Associations It is apropos during this presidential inauguration week we are at the same time reflecting on the life of Dr. Martin Luther King. His vision and his impact on the psyche of American society cannot be overstated. Our remembrance of his life’s work forces us to assess how far we have come (or not come) to realize the dream he laid out for us and our country.

In many of Dr. King’s messages he spoke of the inherent contradictions that permeate our society. America’s history has been filled with greed and hollow promises and at the same time filled with unbelievable generosity and commitment. The outpouring of generosity and concern, some may even call love, during times of crises reveal the connections we have regardless of those differences that keep us apart during our daily routines. In Dr. King’s book, Stride Toward Freedom, he stated “There must be a rhythmic alternation between attacking the causes and healing the effects.”

The next chapter for the America story is one that must seek to advance the messages of Dr. King and others like him. If so doing we are tapping the core of what makes us human and humane. Many of us in the nonprofit sector remain committed to this message and we can start by holding firm to his ideals. In so doing we make it possible to write a chapter that even Dr. King would be proud of.

Dr. Alvardo is Executive Director of the National Council of Nonprofit Associations, which advances the vital role and capacity of the nonprofit sector in civil society and supports and give voice to state and regional associations of nonprofit organizations.