This September 11, 2023, is the 22nd anniversary since that fateful day when nearly 3,000 Americans lost their lives in a deadly terrorist attack on the United States. In the years since then, observance activities have become fewer, some memories of that day have faded, and a new generation may even be unfamiliar with the significance of 9-11.
We at SER National and the SER Network of Affiliates believe every day is an opportunity to acknowledge the people who died in that horrible tragedy, even if we did not know them or their names. Each of us can honor these fallen Americans by faithfully carrying on our endeavors in service to others, much as those men and women from all backgrounds and walks of life did before their lives were suddenly cut short.
For example, in New York’s Bronx Borough, not far from where the World Trade Center Towers once stood before collapsing in the attack, SER Network of Affiliates partner, Neighborhood Association for Inter-Cultural Affairs (NAICA), continues to provide vital services daily to its predominantly Latino stakeholders as it has since 1974. Its mission is to provide a safety net of social services that enable the people NAICA reaches to become self-sufficient and have a better quality of life for themselves and their families.
Another SER affiliate in the nearby Brooklyn Borough is Southside United HDFC, Los Sures. This organization began with just a handful of volunteers in 1972 to reclaim, preserve, and rebuild the area known as the Southside of Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Over five decades later, Los Sures remains a loyal and enduring hope for generations of residents in one of our country’s iconic, increasingly diverse, and vibrant communities.
“My heart is filled with joy and overwhelmed by the dedication of all these men and women who pour their energy and souls into their mission for long hours every day,” says Ignacio Salazar, SER National President and CEO. “I cannot help but think and say without equivocation that out of the pain and sadness of 9-11 has arisen a renewed strength and resilience among the people of New York, and indeed America. No matter what, we can and will endure. The lesson for each of us is that no matter where we live and how little we think our talents or resources may allow us to contribute, our granito de arena, our tiny grains of sand, will multiply to form the shores of this great land.”
SER National and the SER Network of Affiliates stand with the families whose loved ones perished on 9-11. We join together and say, America will never forget, and we shall always respect and honor their sacrifice through our selfless service to others. May they rest in peace and power.