?Community? is tossed around in different ways. Seven billion of us are spread over thousands of miles, yet we still think and care about our fellow humans across this global community. The relief efforts after Typhoon Hayain in the Phillipines is a recent example of this. It also shows how difficult it can be to get help to people far away.
We then break ourselves into, still large, national and state communities. Actions on this level are tough to execute as well. Implementing the Affordable Care Act shows how making changes for hundreds of millions can cause problems ? and bitter feelings.
Smaller communities are easier to navigate and can have an immediate impact on individuals ? for good or ill. We build our nations and world through our families and neighborhoods ? not through centralized governments. The most important contributors are parents. When the priority is raising kids and teaching them how to work hard, be honest and serve others, our neighborhoods are strengthened. When those positive choices are multiplied by millions, states, nations and the entire world benefit. In contrast, if parents neglect their kids, the same communities become weaker as the rest of their members exhaust themselves shouldering extra burdens.
It?s important to look inward and evaluate whether we are helping or hindering the communities we are part of. Am I a burden or a benefit to my family, my neighborhood, my church, or my town? Am I working to make things better?
In our Lincoln County community, there are people literally exhausting themselves to keep us strong and make us better. To see what I mean, turn the page and learn about the county?s volunteer emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and firefighters. These folks do hundreds of hours of training and then take on the most difficult situations you can imagine to save lives. Every time a call comes in, someone gives up time with family, church, work or even sleep to help another in distress. These neighbors also deal with the mental and emotional aftermath of seeing mangled vehicles, people in terrible pain and those who do not survive. We have more than our share of bad highway accidents, and without the volunteer EMTs and firefighters, there would be nobody with training within hundreds of miles to come to the rescue.
These community members are a shining example of those who give more than they receive. We are a stronger community because of them, and they deserve recognition and thanks.
This article was originally published in?Lincoln County Magazine. Visit a local store to pick up your copy.