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La Grande Observer Daily Paper 07/28/14

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Home arrow Opinion arrow Our View arrow Remember those less fortunate

Remember those less fortunate

The holiday season traditionally focuses needed attention on those in our community who are in the midst of a desperate battle against hunger.

It is an undeniable feature of our community that there are many facing hunger and that there are many more who are willing to lend a hand. Food drives and individual donations illustrate how giving our little piece of America is when it comes to helping out those who are less fortunate.

Yet when the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday’s recede, the need to help those less fortunate in our community will, unfortunately, remain. The holiday season — thankfully — always proves to be a suitable platform to showcase those who need our help the most. But those same individuals — and many others — need our help throughout the year.

Further, government safety nets — including nutrition programs — have continued to narrow. We can argue whether it is right or wrong to scale back on these programs, but if we do cut these government programs, we will be left with the moral responsibility to privately pick up the slack through churches, food banks and other outreach efforts to make sure that the community is properly fed and clothed, and their homes heated.

That is why it is important to remember two key things: If you can donate or otherwise help a local food bank during the holiday season, please do. And remember, that once December ends and the New Year begins, the need for community help with food banks will linger.

Those who face tough times during the holiday season need our assistance. Yet they also need our help throughout the year.

In an area where the ethic of self-reliance runs strong, many of those who accept a hand do so reluctantly, sometimes shamefully. But that doesn’t mean they don’t need a hand, especially families with children. Remember: Food pantries, and others who help the needy, rely upon help from donors.

When the holiday season ends, don’t forget those who are less fortunate.

 
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