Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Helping The Needy

This year, my family decided to adopt a family in need of a hand and buy Christmas presents for them instead of each other. Through a social worker, my sister was able to identify a young couple with three children in my parents' hometown of Marshall, Illinois. As Christmas approached this past weekend, my sister ran into a snag in trying to deliver Christmas joy to the family when she discovered the family's telephone had been disconnected, and it appeared the family no longer lived in their house. Upon further investigation, my sister learned the three children had been removed from their parents' home days earlier by child protective services and placed in foster homes. The social worker put my sister in touch with the children's grandparents. Last night, my two sisters delivered the presents to children's grandparents' home with the hope the gifts would reach the intended recipients. The grandparents said nothing about the circumstances of the family, only that they would be seeing all of them and make sure they received the presents.

According to the social worker, the family had on four separate occasions in the past year removed the children from local schools to move to Tennessee, only to later return to Marshall. Surprisingly, the children's teachers say the children do well in school when they are enrolled. As I think back on my life growing up in Marshall, I can say that I spent every single Christmas with my family, and I have continued to return home every Christmas since I left home. I can't imagine spending Christmas apart from my family voluntarily, let alone by the hand of someone else because my parents were deemed unfit to parent me. I can only hope the future turns brighter for this family we chose to adopt this holiday season, or at least they were able to enjoy a little holiday cheer from the unexpected gifts we gave them.


Anonymous said...

Gary, the title of your post doesn't really match the substance. The title screams "totally offensive idiot" yet your actual text isn't so bad. Perhaps you would consider changing your title to make it a little less "all about me and how frustrating it is to help the poor?" Merry Christmas.

Anonymous said...

That was pretty cool, what you and your family did. I know that there are alot of families in eastern Illinois who for various reasons have felt an economic pinch lately; my hometown of Danville is facing rough times. I drove my family over there to celebrate the day, it was nice as I hadn't had a Christmas off in 5 years. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and keep up the good work as far as bringing local news to your readers. The objective and forthright approach is much appreciated!

Gary R. Welsh said...

Thanks, Michael. I didn't know you were from Danville. I lived there for four months back in 1986 coordinating Bill Black's state rep. race for him. The loss of the GM foundry in Tilford took the life out of that town. It was really bad then. Everyone wanted a job at the new state prison. That's how bad it was.

Anonymous said...

This again only proves that its not where people live or how much income they have.

When the people of this country understands that money is not the answer to all problems, then and only then can we start really helping people who needs a little help.