I was invited to be the guest speaker at today’s annual luncheon for Northwest Portland Ministries. It was quite an honor; this is a wonderful interfaith organization that provides food, transportation and other volunteer services to people in NW Portland. It was my first time speaking publicly about this journey, and I couldn’t have imagined a more thoughtful or caring audience.

I challenged people to try their hand at giving cash to a stranger. Everyone had a ticket at their place setting. At the end of the event we randomly selected two ticket holders and gave them each a $100 bill. The two winners will be writing about their own experiences on the “Your Stories” page, so stay tuned!

As a background during my talk and reading, there was a slideshow of some of the people to whom I have given C-notes. Two people came up to me and each said they knew one of the recipients. “That’s my cousin!” one woman exclaimed during the Q&A. Is it a small world, or what?

If you have a story of giving and connection, please consider sharing it on this page.

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5 Responses to Wanted: Your Stories

  1. Desi Shubin says:

    Jill,
    I was in the audience today as a board member for NW Portland Ministries and I can not tell you how inspiring you are. I was extremely moved by your story and couldn’t believe how you touched on so many things that I feel myslef. You have moved me to take you up on your challenge even though my number was not picked. Thank you so much for sharing.
    Desi Shubin

    • Jill Ginsberg says:

      Desi- Thank you so much! How wonderful that you took me up on this challenge; please share your experience; I would love to know how it turns out. Warm regards- Jill

  2. gramma says:

    I heard you speak. You are amazing. Your ability to give is impressive. Have you continued to have an outpouring of gratitude with a sense of your generosity being divine intervention? I was surprised said you do not believe in God. Do you believe in angels or random acts of kindness, or karma, or positive energy being sent out into the world? You are a very giving physician with an impressive son and teach service with your actions. Do you mind sharing your beliefs or associations? If not I understand. Mine are complicated too. Thanks again for being an inspiration and not being a judge. I see what you describe as judgement as discretion. I feel we all have values. Those values set forth basic principles. If not upheld, we use our discretion. BUT, is it judgement? Is it our place to judge? If we have the gall to convict someone for their circumstance where are we? I understand not giving someone a hundred bucks but there is soooo much more in life that is not an easy decision. Please share your thoughts when you have time. Even a month from now. I am interested in your internal value system. WHat is your drive, purpose or perspective on why you do what you do? Thanks for sharing if you choose to do so. 🙂

  3. Jason says:

    Well, I saw you speak and it inspired me to share what I have to offer. I do not have much money for even myself and my family, so I did something different. I came home after the meeting and realized that a woman had died in a fire on my block. I did not know her. But, I decided it was time to better get to know my neighbors and offer what service I can. I walked up to about 30 people over the next few days. Some at gas stations, some at my own home and some wandering to theirs. I explained that my New Years resolution is to be a better neighbor and offer kindness and service to those around me. I have a house with an extremely overgrown yard down the block. The rumor was that a hermitish man lived there and he may even be a predator. I decided to see past the rumors and go to his door. I was prepared just in case, but when he opened the door, I found a hunched over man inside who asked for help getting his mail. He hadn’t had guests in many years and had a stroke in 2003. He had helpers for a while but does not have enough benefit for all he needs. I am now a new helper. Thanks for the example.

    • Jill Ginsberg says:

      Jason, I love what you did in response to a terrible tragedy. Thank you so much for sharing this, and for letting me inspire you in some small way. It is a beautiful thing to be able to make an impact on a life. Keep up the great work! I hope you share some more stories.

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