To commemorate the 9/11 tragedy and turn it into something positive, have your small business participate in a National Day of Service and Remembrance. Here’s how …
Editor’s note: This story was last updated September 6, 2022
September 11 is a challenging day for Americans. So many lives were lost and so much of our country’s security was quickly brought into question. Suffice to say, life in the United States hasn’t been (and won’t be) the same since.
However, as we look back on this fateful day, many people find solace in transforming the somber day into a reason to do some extra good in the world. They’ve turn it into a day of positive action, not just remembrance.
Many businesses and their workers continue to deal with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, which makes finding the time to figure out the best way to remember 9/11 hard to come by. Use this list of good deeds as inspiration.
Attend an in-person or virtual 9/11 Memorial event
For your workers that live in or around New York City, there’s the National September 11 Memorial and Museum they can visit, which is the most recognizable memorial that honors the lives lost from the attack. The museum will host a live broadcast of the 9/11 commemoration ceremony on Sunday, September 11; details are here.
There are other monuments across the country worth visiting as well, such as the Flight 93 National Memorial in Pennsylvania and Reflect 9/11 Memorial Sculpture in California. You and your employees can check to see if your local area has monument or event you can visit or attend.
Do a stair climb or Heroes Run
You and your workers can honor the 343 first responders who gave their lives on 9/11 by climbing 110 stories — which equals the highest point of the World Trade Center. Here’s where you can find a local stair climb and how to host one of your own.
Another way to honor first responders and service members is through participating in Heroes Runs, sponsored by the Travis Manion Foundation. Find event locations and registration information here.
Invite a guest speaker
Inviting a guest speaker to speak about their personal 9/11 experience at your workplace is another way to honor 9/11 and gain perspective. Here’s a list of some speakers who have first-hand accounts of 9/11.
Host a blood drive
There’s always a need for blood, but as with all things, fitting it into a busy schedule or going through all the hassle of identifying where you need to go and when to actually donate can be all it takes to prevent people from following through. So why not bring the donation center to your employees? Hosting a blood drive at your business on 9/11 is a great way to not only make it easy for your employees to help out, but to get involved in your neighborhood by inviting local businesses and residents to stop by and donate as well.
Volunteer with a local nonprofit
- Points of Light
- Youth Service America
Donate to organizations that support families of 9/11 victims
Even though it’s been over 21 years since 9/11, there are still victims’ families that are in need of financial support. Whether you want to host a fundraiser on 9/11 or simply make a donation in the name of your company, 9/11day.org makes is easy peasy to donate to donate to nonprofits and initiatives designed to turn a sad day into a meaningful one.
Other organizations and programs you can donate to are:
- The FDNY Foundation and the New York City Police Foundation
- Families of Freedom Fund
- Tuesday’s Children
- The Never Forget Fund
Send a care package or note to a soldier through Operation Gratitude
Operation Gratitude is an organization that allows people across the country to express gratitude for all who serve though:
- Donating gifts
- Making handmade items
- Writing letters
The organization also has opportunities for companies to volunteer with their staff.
Show appreciation to loved ones, your community, and other businesses
It’s always important to show your loved ones that you appreciate them. This day serves as a good reminder to spread love and positivity to those around you. Giving back to your community — through volunteering, donations, and more — also adds crucial goodness to the world.
Many small businesses have been struggling the past couple years. Why not let the reverence that 9/11 inspires be used to support your fellow small businesses who make up the vibrant local business community that you’re a part of? Some ideas you can use include catering from a local restaurant or giving out gift certificates to local stores to your employees.
Keep the good deeds going all year long
The National Day of Service and Remembrance on 9/11 is an important time to honor those we’ve lost and to always help those around us. It’s also a reminder that doing good deeds for others is something the world could use not just once a year — but all year round.