Letters

Letters 10-20-2014

Doctor Dan? After several email conversations with Rep. Benishek, he has confirmed that he doesn’t have a clue of what he does. Here’s why...

In Favor Of Our Parks [Traverse] City Proposal 1 is a creative way to improve our city parks without using our tax dollars. By using a small portion of our oil and gas royalties from the Brown Bridge Trust Fund, our parks can be improved for our children and grandchildren.

From January 1970 Popular Mechanics: “Drastic climate changes will occur within the next 50 years if the use of fossil fuels keeps rising at current rates.” That warning comes from Eugene K. Peterson of the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.

Newcomers Might Leave: Recently we had guests from India who came over as students with the plan to stay in America. He has a master’s degree in engineering and she is doing her residency in Chicago and plans to specialize in oncology. They talked very candidly about American politics and said that after observing...

Someone Is You: On Sept 21, I joined the 400,000 who took to the streets of New York in the People’s Climate March, followed by a UN Climate Summit and many speeches. On October 13, the Pentagon issued a report calling climate change a significant threat to national security requiring immediate action. How do we move from marches, speeches and reports to meaningful work on this problem? In NYC I read a sign with a simple answer...

Necessary To Pay: Last fall, Grand Traverse voters authorized a new tax to fix roads. It is good, it is necessary.

The Real Reasons for Wolf Hunt: I have really been surprised that no one has been commenting on the true reason for the wolf hunt. All this effort has not been expended so 23 wolves can be killed each year. Instead this manufactured controversy about the wolf hunt has been very carefully crafted to get Proposal 14-2 passed.

Home · Articles · News · Other Opinions · The Joy of helping...
. . . .

The Joy of helping others

Beth Havens - December 15th, 2008
Ah Christmas.
Always the one day each year that each child anticipates and looks forward to with wonder and hope.
Well, not every child. At this time of year I can’t help but think of the many children in our area who may receive very little -- if anything -- when they wake on Christmas morning. Dinner for these children and their parents will not be the feast most Americans are use to celebrating with family. How do I know? I use to be that child.
I remember our family struggling to make ends meet, not just at Christmas, but much of the year. Despite my mother working two jobs, many times she found it very difficult to meet our basic needs. Christmas was one of the harder times. As a child it was difficult, but it was also difficult on my mom. She knew she could not afford to buy us the fancy toys or the latest fashions. This had to be frustrating for a parent.
When I was young, I remember receiving some things from our church around Christmas time. It was usually food, but sometimes we would get small gifts as well. My mom rarely ever asked for help, but if it showed up, especially if we, my brothers, my cousin who lived with us, and I were around, she would accept it. She was always torn between wanting to provide everything for our family herself and the reality that sometimes it was just too difficult.
Why not contact a government or local agency for help? Some families do, but some feel others are in greater need and do not want to use those resources. My family could have qualified for many of these programs. However, we did not access them. Not being able to provide everything for your family is heart breaking, yet I see the parents of some children dealing with the same struggle my mom did over us.
There are many programs that will help struggling families, but often the help needs to be requested. This is a difficult step for some parents. Other lesser known programs, like Boots for Kids, will provide support with a referral from others outside the family such as school personnel. It doesn’t matter where the help comes from, as long as it reaches the children.
I’m just one person, but I wanted to make a difference for those children with and among whom I have so much in common. For the last two years I’ve been working with colleagues to provide support for as many families as we can. With the support of great people and the willingness to donate from local businesses and individual community members, some of the struggling families in our area will receive a little extra hope and wonder this Christmas.
The support provided to our “Christmas Families” is not made known to the children. The parents are able to give the gifts to their children, either from Santa or themselves. The children never know the gifts came from anywhere else, as it should be.
If you would like to help struggling families please contact community agencies in your area.

Special ed teacher Beth Havens is gathering donations for Christmas families. To help out, please email:
HavensBe@silverlake.tcaps.net

 
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