My Turn: Eschew an Eyore mentality and spread hope
October 14, 2008
Doom and gloom abound. Based on the value of my retirement account, I’ll need to work ten years past my death in order to have enough money to retire. It’s difficult to get past that feeling of loss and get to the place of caring and concern for others in need.
In our community there are many in need. In our community we have extremely vulnerable people who are unable to meet the most basic needs for survival such as feeding their families or having a safe and warm place to live.
Some of these vulnerable people are simply in a bad place right now. There are outside circumstances such as illness, loss of a job, or a bad mortgage that put them in need. Later, they may be able to take care of themselves and their families. Others are people who will always be dependent on outside resources to meet their basic needs: those with severe physical or mental disabilities or low income seniors needing help to live out the rest of their lives in dignity.
Government is slowly abandoning its role in caring for our most vulnerable people. This shift means that what protects and supports those of us in need is in the hands of nonprofits.
We can be Eyores, spreading that gloom and doom around. Or, we can choose to tap into our capacity for hope, our capability for problem solving and our collective willingness to care for each other.
Safety net organizations need us to tap into that capacity capability, and willingness to be good neighbors. Organizations such as Project MANA, the North Tahoe and Truckee Family Resource Centers, Tahoe Women’s Services, and Sierra Senior Services all see an increase in demand and a decrease in donations, due in large part of the poor economy.
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Project MANA, Tahoe Truckee’s hunger relief organization reports a 14 percent increase in people requesting food. And, while I can’t fix the economy, I can do something tangible for people in my community. A check for $25 is in the mail to Project MANA.