Brevard County Bar Association
 

The Brevard County Bar Association (BCBA) is a voluntary professional association with more than 650 attorneys practicing in the 18th Judicial Circuit of Florida. BCBA memberDSC_6525s work to improve the legal profession, the community in which they live and the administration of justice in society.
 
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Message From The President Leslie J. Castaldi
 
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It’s that time of year again – the “Holiday Season.” Our personal and spiritual traditions and perspectives vary widely. For me, it is a time to come together and share with those people whom I love – whether it be food, gifts, or time.
 
At the same time, this season can pose challenges for many of us. Our clients seem needier, more desperate. Our families are either trying to get together (or not). We are trying to wrap up the end-of-the-year business matters. Many of us are shopping, cooking, writing holiday cards and notes, decorating, and attending holiday functions. It is a difficult time for our loved ones who are suffering or even in recovery from substance abuse or alcoholism.
 
It can be very overwhelming.
 
On the other hand, we have so much about which to be grateful. I know that I have a comfortable and safe home, food, my health, a beautiful, healthy daughter, and relative peace in my community. How do I share these gifts?
 
Perhaps by giving to one or more of the many organizations that are dedicated to improving the health, financial well-being, and civil rights of others less fortunate than we. One of my favorite journalists, Nicholas Kristof, wrote a wonderful op-ed piece recently in “The New York Times” called, “Gifts with Meaning.” Here are just a few of the organizations that Mr. Kristof recommends (see his article for additional deserving groups):
 
Heifer International (heifer.org) - strives to end poverty and hunger by enhancing the capacity of small-scale farmers, especially women. Your donations buy cows, goats, llamas, chickens, ducks, etc., for families to either provide them with sustenance and warm clothing or an income or your donations may fund a particular project.
 
CARE (care.org) – provides emergency response, education, and health care to the poor around the world. CARE focuses on empowering women and girls through micro-finance, education, and promoting maternal health.
 
Communities in Schools (communitiesinschools.org) – assists disadvantaged students to achieve academically by partnering with local businesses, social services agencies, health care providers, and volunteers.
 
International Rescue Committee (rescue.org) – created by Albert Einstein, the IRC provides response and relief to refugees in humanitarian crises around the world.
 
Trickle Up (trickleup.org) – provides the extremely poor (those who live on less than $1.25 a day) with seed capital, skills training, and support in creating small businesses around the world.
 
CureBlindness.org – The Himlayan Cataract Project give the gift of sight by providing cataract surgery at a cost of $25 for each procedure and is curing blindness caused by malnutrition, poor water quality, inadequate health care, and lack of sanitation in poor areas of the world.
 
Of course, I am sure that you have your own special charities that help raise people out of poverty, heal, and feed. Giving to these organizations is in keeping with the spirit of the season.
 
On a more personal note, I would like to thank our annual sponsors, without whose support we could not offer the BCBA membership outstanding programs and events: Porsche/Mercedes-Benz/Audi; The Glover-Charles Group; TD Bank; and JT Vinson Clothiers. In addition, thank you to Alan Landman, P.A., Alpizar Law, and Funk, Szachaca & Diamond for sponsoring the recent Mix and Mingle with the Judges reception.
 
Finally, thank you to my fellow BCBA Board members; they are wonderful, amazing people and I am so grateful to be part of their team. Happy Holidays!