Captain America: The Star-Spangled Avenger
You can’t get much more patriotic than Captain America. He is not just the namesake of America: He is the representation and personification of American values. He is formidable, resourceful, and always willing to help his fellow superheroes battle evil. Captain America is a metaphor for the very idea of America, what it stands for, and what American ideals and values can do for a person once they are internalized and then unleashed. Captain America epitomizes the amazing abilities that all Americans are capable of.
Granted, Steve Rogers had some help to become the amazing superhero Captain America. With the injection of the super soldier serum, Steve Rogers was transformed into the iconic “Cap,” whose highly recognizable and unabashedly patriotic costume is best represented with this Captain America compression shirt.
The injection of the super soldier serum can be seen as a metaphor for what happens to an individual when they embrace the idea of America and literally let America start flowing through their veins. What is the lifeblood of America? It is when we help each other. That is when Americans are at their very best.
You don’t have to be a Super Soldier to help someone
So what do you do if you don’t have a shield, super powers, or a cool superhero name? What can you do to help people? Everyone can’t be Captain America, but that doesn’t mean that everyone can’t do something helpful for their country and/or for their community.
It doesn’t take more than a casual glance around right where you are now to see the many opportunities to help our fellow citizens. The good part is that it likely won’t involve throwing a shield at a supervillain, or anyone else to make a difference. There are many worthy causes, charities and organizations that need help. They need both monetary donations and individual participation.
Choose a cause that means something to you, and find a way to become involved. Most charities will accept not just cash donations, but cars, clothes, furniture, and food. Every community has different needs, and every person has different priorities. Find the one that aligns with yours and give in any way that you can.
Small monetary donations are always a good idea, but what about your time? If you can’t give money, you can always give your time. Can you help sort clothes at a clothes closet or stack food at a food bank? Make sandwiches for the homeless? There are many ways that a person can get involved. I remember when my son was born there was a group of older women that would come in to hold the babies in the Neo-Natal Intensive Care ward.
There are many different opportunities to give back to the community. Here are some suggestions in case you get stumped.
- Read to a class at an elementary school.
- Prepare food at a shelter.
- Donate a small amount of money monthly to a cause for children.
- Donate food to a food bank.
- Donate used clothing, especially coats and children’s clothes, to a close closet.
- Donate blood.
- Drive Cancer patients to and from treatment.
- Volunteer at a Hospice and visit with them.
- Donate to the V.F.W.
- Pay for a child in need to be able to participate in an extra-curricular activity.
- Volunteer a special skill you have to an organization, such as carpentry, etc.
Even with the suggestions I have listed above, you don’t need to over think it when it comes to helping your community. You can start not just local, but extremely local: How about helping your neighbor?
If you have older neighbors, maybe you can pick up their groceries for them, invite them over for dinner some night, or help them with their yard work. Do they need their lawn mowed? Sadly, most of us don’t even know our neighbors, so building a sense of community doesn’t have to be an abstract idea, or something that you even have to drive to. You can start by helping the people right next door.
While most of the suggestions and opportunities I have highlighted are local, if I was to single out a national charity fitting for a fan of Captain America, I would have to say that it would be the Wounded Warrior Project. Check out the many locations and opportunities that they have for someone looking to help a real super soldier.
When it comes to volunteering, you rarely need a specific skill, just a willingness to help, and a positive attitude. Put on the one-of-a-kind Captain America compression shirt and feel like a superhero as you give back to your fellow Americans today!