Optimism can exist in caring communities


Guest Blog By Sandy Herle, Close to You Boutique
You know that age old saying, “There but for the grace of God go I,” or “My pay cheque barely covers my monthly expenses…..what’s going to happen if anything changes? If I lose my job? If an expense comes up that I just hadn’t planned for?”
I truly think that there are very few of us who can say they have never had those thoughts cross their mind or cross the mind of someone they know.
Have you ever said or thought there just wasn’t going to be enough pay cheque to cover your month?
Have you ever tallied your grocery cart before you made it to the check out to make sure you had enough money?
Have you ever…
To be honest, I think that at one time in everyone’s life there has been a moment or two when those questions arose….but we have been the lucky ones because usually it is just that, a moment or two in our lives. We have not had to face what seemed to be a never ending challenge. We were allowed to be optimistic because we knew that our challenges were temporary, our lives, our finances would get better.
Not everyone is so fortunate, those families, those moms and dads, those seniors may not have that positive tomorrow ahead of them. Communities, neighborhoods with poverty in their homes and on their streets face obstacles that have an impact on all of us.
Those of us that have seen these tough days know what I am talking about; when there is barely enough to make the rent and hydro, barely enough to put nourishing meals on the table for our families. When all we can see is the downside. We see that our children aren’t going to able to realize the benefits of a safe and comfortable home to live in, aren’t going to be able to eat three satisfying meals a day. Or maybe they will but we won’t…kids first you know.
As a community it is not impossible to see the impact this life has on our area. We see it on our streets; we see it when children go to school without warm coats, good footwear or lunches to eat. How hard this must be on the other children, the teachers, the school bus drivers to see this every day.
It is in caring communities that optimism can exist. Our support strengthens our communities; it is here that as a smaller community, we can see firsthand the negative impact of poverty but we will also see the positive differences we can contribute to.
As a business in Parksville, we have been so fortunate to have been successful in this beautiful region. It is that success and to be honest, a short, adult life on the ‘other side of the room’ that has made us want to give back. This year the SOS Project Rebuild Campaign reminded me that we could contribute, yes it has been challenging over the past couple of years for everyone, but honestly, we have survived and this is something we could do.
SOS has so many programs that make a difference, so many programs that make a positive contribution. Their programs cater to all who need assistance and guidance. They work to guide and give knowledge and the tools to all who ask; from children, to parents, to seniors and those that fall in between. As a community of caring people we can work towards making a difference, perhaps not eliminating poverty but certainly giving some assistance to those who need the help.
So my question is…. If it is not us, the business community and others who can….then who? We can assist in contributing to making a difference. We can help our community grow stronger and better.
Sandy Herle
Close to you Boutique, Parksville