Letters to the Editor

Kirkland residents step up to help needy children and families | Letter

Kirkland residents helped those in need on Dec. 20 by donating food. - Contributed photo/Dave Asher
Kirkland residents helped those in need on Dec. 20 by donating food.
— image credit: Contributed photo/Dave Asher

There’s happiness in dozens of households in Kirkland. It’s the result of many families in our wonderful community stepping up to help their neighbors. Those neighbors often aren’t sure whether they will have enough to eat. Each of the needy families have elementary school aged children. Many have younger children that aren’t even in school, yet. Family size ranges to as large as nine in a home.

Most of the first graders don’t know why there often isn’t enough to eat, but this holiday season they won’t have that to worry about it thanks to scores of angelic Kirklanders. Angels that have gone out of their way to buy food, pack it up and bring it as their gift to help those in need. More than 80 large boxes of food were dropped off at a church, on the morning of Dec. 20, by these Kirkland Angels and by evening those boxes were in the homes of families in need. This will be repeated at the end of next week, also; as volunteers have already signed up for another 80 boxes of food served up with large portions of human kindness.

Over the long school break some of the most needy children that normally get free or reduced price meals at school are indeed in difficult times. It is during these break times when Kirkland Nourishing Network tries to identify the need and provide a way for neighbors to help neighbors. Working in cooperation with school counselors and teachers, an efficient operation of sign-up, drop-off and pick-up occurs because so many in our community care.  For most, this isn’t a write-a-check charity. They actually do the shopping, tote the boxes and bring them to a drop-off point. There’s satisfaction in that aspect, too.

Out of the scores of angels, there are “special” angels. Some muster support from those they know and those that they buttonhole just to get them to listen. There are angels that volunteer their returning, collegiate family members to stand in the cold and accept boxes of food from complete strangers. And there are many maternal angels teaching their own children that “this is what you do” when you have the means to help people in need.  These, along with many angels from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in the Evergreen Hill neighborhood, make this work. This chorus of community is quintessential Kirkland.

Kirkland Nourishing Network is working to improve the identification of need, the cooperation of helping organizations and making more community connections between neighbors. With such a core of Kirkland Angels as we have, now, the hope is that it won’t be long before we can help many more needy elementary school children and their families. For the immediate future, there will be appropriately-sized projects for both the mid-winter break and spring break. To get notified when these efforts get under way, email dasher@scn.org and ask to be put on the email list.

Thank you, Kirkland!

Dave Asher, Kirkland

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