This past Sunday, countries around the world marked the first World Day of the Poor, an event instituted by Pope Francis earlier this year. This got us thinking: as we approach Thanksgiving and reflect with gratitude on all that we have, we believe it's important to renew our commitment to the less fortunate members of our communities. As always, Sargent Shriver leads us in our commitment with his combination of optimism, practicality, and empathy. As Director of the Office Economic of Opportunity from 1964-1968, Sarge led President Johnson's War on Poverty by creating programs that would empower adults and children with limited economic resources. These programs included Head Start, Community Action, and Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA) -- all of which continue to empower Americans today.
In the years after the War on Poverty, Sarge continued to be an advocate for the poor by testifying numerous times before Congress about the importance of efforts to alleviate poverty and about the benefits of the programs he created. Throughout the decades, Sarge always maintained a positive attitude about our ability to tackle the causes and alleviate the effects of poverty, an attitude that is obvious in our Quote of the Week. Let us remember, as Sarge frequently pointed out, that the US has the resources to conquer poverty. The question remains: what are we going to do about it?