This I Believe

Lisa - Lewiston, Idaho
Entered on June 8, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50

I believe in giving back to my community. I believe that simple acts of kindness make a difference. I believe they need to start right here, right now. This belief was inspired by a tragedy when I was in high school. A popular boy was in a car accident that left him brain damaged and unable to function as he had before. I started giving back to my community by volunteering to help “pattern”. Patterning is a process to exercise the muscles of those who cannot do so on their own. Various school mates joined this effort and took time to help the family of our friend. From there I realized that small acts of kindness make a big difference. This resonated within me and I continue to volunteer my time to help causes I believe in and I encourage others to do the same.

Strife, abuse, hunger, poverty and general need are abundant. Even in your hometown. There are national movements to end poverty and stamp out hunger. My questions to you are “What are YOU doing to help a cause in your own community today?” and “Are you able to help a local cause, selflessly, without blame or judgment?”

I support the United Way which in turn supports local non profit organizations like the Boys and Girls Club and food banks. I volunteer as the board chairperson for The Willow Center for Grieving Children an organization providing free grief support to children and teens grieving a death. I cannot stand the idea of families and elderly people going without heat and power. So, I donate to Project Share (a donation based energy assistance fund through our local utility company) when I can. Still, I feel as though I don’t do enough.

I believe that child abuse and neglect has to end. I believe that children are our most precious commodity on earth and they need to be protected, they deserve to be protected. I believe that communities turn a blind eye because individuals don’t want to name the issues. Maybe it’s because of fear? If the issues in our communities are named, we have to own them. If our communities own them, they become collective issues that require action. The problem is, not everyone has the courage to take action, to make a difference.

I believe it’s time to stop pretending. I believe it’s time to reach out and help. If we don’t start right here, right now, who will? If we don’t make changes, who will protect our children and strengthen our communities.

There are local charities that need your help. There are foster children without homes. There babies to be adopted.

I believe we each have a responsibility to do the right thing, right now. You have the power to make a difference.