There's a lot to say about the generosity of Northern Tasmanians.
After a year that challenged almost every household in new and unexpected ways, many found themselves heading into a Christmas like none other. Where the prospect of not being able to buy gifts for their kids was suddenly the grim reality.
That, along with concerns associated with changes to JobKeeper and JobSeeker were among the shared experiences of Northern Tasmania's four major charities - St Vincent de Paul, the Salvation Army, City Mission and the Launceston Benevolent Society.
In what's been repeatedly referred to as one of the toughest years in recent history, the invaluable work these organisations do has never been stretched further.
Fortunately they have support, with the community once again rallying behind The Examiner's Empty Stocking Appeal which has raised close to $125,000 - $45,000 more than the initial target.
When combined with the efforts of last year's Winter Relief Appeal at $119,000, it equals $244,000 raised in and for the community in 2020.
And while we shouldn't be surprised with the effort, with so many Northern Tasmanians doing it tough across the board, why were donations so easily forthcoming?
This was a topic The Examiner explored throughout the pandemic, with many philanthropic organisations reporting a surge in support.
And it turns out a neural link between generosity and happiness has been well established, and perhaps it's just a matter of finding a way to get the serotonin flowing. In a nutshell, receptors in our brain start firing when when we give ourselves up for others.
With more people experiencing isolation and feelings of loneliness in 2020, donating to a charitable cause was an effective way to form a connection with the people around you.
That's not to say that this generosity has not existed in previous years.
But at a time when so many are struggling, knowing those who could gave what they were able to, made all the difference. For that we say thank you.
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